Trump criticizes Pelosi over stalemate on small business loan funds
President Trump on Friday accused Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) of “not doing her job” and blamed Democrats for a stalemate over a deal to add funds to a small-business lending program to help companies suffering as a result of the coronavirus outbreak.
“I think the Democrats are going to do it. Look, Nancy Pelosi, she’s away on vacation or something and she should come back,” Trump said at a White House briefing Friday evening. “She should come back and get this done. I don’t know why she’s not coming back. The fact is, she’s not doing her job and there’s nothing unusual about that for her.”
Trump’s remarks echoed a tweet he sent earlier Friday demanding for Pelosi and Senate Minority Leader Charles Schumer (D-N.Y.) to “immediately” return to Washington to approve the legislation.
House and Senate Republicans have also been absent from the nation’s capital amid the coronavirus outbreak, a detail that the president did not mention.
Republicans and Democrats have been unable to reach a deal to provide $250 billion in additional funds for the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP), which was set up under a bipartisan coronavirus relief package negotiated and signed by Trump in late March.
Republicans want a clean bill to provide new money for the small-business loan program; Democrats have sought reform to the program as well as at least $250 billion in funding for hospitals, state and local governments and the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program for low-income families.
The program officially ran out of funds on Thursday without a deal for more money.
Trump on Friday indicated he believed that $250 billion in funding would be enough for the program without needing to seek more funding.
“It’s going to get us to a point that’s going to be rather beautiful,” Trump told reporters. “It could be that they want more but maybe at a certain point we’re going to stop.”
The president also insisted the program was running “flawlessly,” despite reports about technical glitches and other problems that plagued the rollout of the loan program earlier this month.
“Some people won’t be able to keep their business open if they don’t get that money,” Trump said. “It’s been a tremendous success. It’s been executed flawlessly with few exceptions, it’s really been good.”
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