Pelosi, Schumer 'encouraged' by Trump call for bigger coronavirus relief package

Speaker Nancy PelosiNancy PelosiSunday shows preview: Justice Ginsburg dies, sparking partisan battle over vacancy before election Trump is betting big on the suburbs, but his strategy is failing 'bigly' Trump orders flags at half-staff to honor 'trailblazer' Ginsburg MORE (D-Calif.) and Senate Minority Leader Charles SchumerChuck SchumerVideo of Lindsey Graham arguing against nominating a Supreme Court justice in an election year goes viral Graham signals support for confirming a Supreme Court nominee this year Pelosi orders Capitol flags at half-staff to honor Ginsburg MORE (D-N.Y.) said Wednesday they were “encouraged” by President TrumpDonald John TrumpUS reimposes UN sanctions on Iran amid increasing tensions Jeff Flake: Republicans 'should hold the same position' on SCOTUS vacancy as 2016 Trump supporters chant 'Fill that seat' at North Carolina rally MORE’s tweet urging Republicans to go for a larger coronavirus relief package after months of stalled negotiations. 

Trump’s Wednesday tweet undercut Republicans' long-held position on the coronavirus relief package. 

“We are encouraged that after months of the Senate Republicans insisting on shortchanging the massive needs of the American people, President Trump is now calling on Republicans to ‘go for the much higher numbers’ in the next coronavirus relief package,” Pelosi and Schumer said in a joint statement after Trump’s tweet. 

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“We look forward to hearing from the President’s negotiators that they will finally meet us halfway with a bill that is equal to the massive health and economic crises gripping our nation,” the top Democrats added. 

Congress has not been able to reach a negotiation on another coronavirus relief package, with Democrats slamming a Republican proposal as an “emaciated” offer and Republicans unwilling to take up the Democrats’ $3.4 trillion relief package the House passed in May. 

But on Wednesday the president encouraged his party to back a more expensive bill. 

“Go for the much higher numbers, Republicans, it all comes back to the USA anyway (one way or another!),” Trump tweeted. 

He also slammed Democrats as “heartless,” and falsely accused them of not wanting to give stimulus payments to “people who desperately need the money.”