Trump says Democrats aren’t ‘giving enough’ in coronavirus bill talks

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President Trump said Friday that he didn’t support House legislation to assist families impacted by the coronavirus, saying House Democrats weren’t “giving enough.” 

“We just don’t think they’re giving enough, we don’t think the Democrats are giving enough,” Trump told reporters in the White House Rose Garden when asked about his opinion of the House legislation. “They didn’t agree to certain things.” 

Trump seemed to suggest that a deal was still possible but unlikely. The president did not elaborate on the hang-ups over the legislation. 

“We could have something,” Trump added. “They’re not doing what’s right for the country.” 

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) and Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin have been negotiating for several days to nail down a bipartisan agreement to help Americans impacted by the coronavirus. 

Pelosi delivered remarks in the Speaker’s balcony in the Capitol roughly an hour before Trump was slated to speak in the Rose Garden, touting the House bill provisions that offer paid sick leave, bolster unemployment benefits and provide school lunches to children from underprivileged families.

She signaled the House would pass the bill with or without Trump’s support and made no comment on the president’s lack of support for the legislation. 

“The American people expect and deserve a coordinated science-based and whole-of-government response to keep them and their loved ones safe — a response that puts families first to stimulate the economy,” Pelosi said. “Today we are passing a bill that does just that.”

Shortly after 4 p.m., while Trump was still addressing reporters in the Rose Garden, Pelosi and Mnuchin spoke again twice by phone in search of a deal — their 10th and 11th conversations of the day. 

Trump earlier Friday renewed his push for a payroll tax cut on Twitter, something that has prompted opposition from members of both parties in Congress.

It’s unclear, however, if the payroll tax issue is one of the hurdles preventing a deal. Republicans lawmakers have criticized other elements of the Democrats’ proposal, particularly the expansion of paid leave, which they fear will harm small businesses. 

Tags Coronavirus Donald Trump Nancy Pelosi Steven Mnuchin
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