Pelosi, Schumer set for first meeting with WH team on new COVID-19 relief bill

Pelosi, Schumer set for first meeting with WH team on new COVID-19 relief bill
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House Speaker Nancy PelosiNancy PelosiBiden marks World AIDS Day with new actions to end HIV epidemic by 2030 DeFazio becomes 19th House Democrat to retire Pelosi: Democrats can't allow 'indecent' Boebert comments to stand MORE (D-Calif.) and Senate Minority Leader Charles SchumerChuck SchumerDemocrats wrangle to keep climate priorities in spending bill  Coons says White House could impose border fee for carbon-intensive products The Hill's Morning Report - Presented by Facebook - The omicron threat and Biden's plan to beat it MORE (D-N.Y.) are set to meet on Tuesday afternoon with Treasury Secretary Steven MnuchinSteven MnuchinThe Hill's Morning Report - Presented by Facebook - Biden to tackle omicron risks with new travel rules Mnuchin and McConnell discuss debt limit during brief meeting Major Russian hacking group linked to ransomware attack on Sinclair: report MORE and White House chief of staff Mark MeadowsMark MeadowsJan. 6 panel recommends contempt charges for Trump DOJ official Fauci 'not aware' Trump tested positive for COVID-19 days before 2020 debate The Hill's 12:30 Report: Trump's pre-debate COVID-19 test sparks criticism MORE.

The meeting, which two sources confirmed to The Hill, will be the first time administration officials and Democratic leadership have sat down for face-to-face discussions about a fifth coronavirus relief package.

It comes as Congress and the White House are under intense pressure to provide more relief with coronavirus cases climbing across the country and unemployment stuck in the double digits.


"Well, our message to them is let's get going," Schumer told CNN's "New Day" during an interview on Tuesday morning.

Schumer then pointed to differences between the White House and congressional Republicans as a reason for the stalled talks.

"The Republicans don't even seem to have their own act together. It's hard to negotiate when the president says one thing, Senate Republicans say another," he said.

"We hope they're going to be unified and present something to us ... in detail," Schumer added.

Lawmakers and the administration have weeks to get a deal before Congress is scheduled to leave town until early September.

Administration officials have said they want a deal by the end of the month, to line up with the soon-to-expire federal increase in unemployment benefits. The Senate is scheduled to leave town on Aug. 7, giving negotiators more flexibility.

There are several divisions not just among Republicans and Democrats but GOP senators and the White House over key policy proposals lawmakers are debating including in the next coronavirus bill.

The House previously passed a $3 trillion relief bill largely along party lines. McConnell and the White House are eyeing a $1 trillion measure, though senators have acknowledged that could creep upward.

Tuesday is poised to be a crucial day in the negotiations. Mnuchin and Meadows will meet on Tuesday morning with a key group of Senate Republican negotiators: Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pension Committee Chairman Lamar AlexanderLamar AlexanderMcConnell gets GOP wake-up call The Hill's Morning Report - Presented by Alibaba - Democrats return to disappointment on immigration Authorities link ex-Tennessee governor to killing of Jimmy Hoffa associate MORE, Senate Appropriations Committee Chairman Richard ShelbyRichard Craig ShelbyCongress's goal in December: Avoid shutdown and default Republicans struggle to save funding for Trump's border wall On The Money — Biden sticks with Powell despite pressure MORE and Sen. Roy BluntRoy Dean BluntOvernight Defense & National Security — Senate looks to break defense bill stalemate Senate GOP moving toward deal to break defense bill stalemate Senate Republicans clash over government shutdown strategy MORE (R-Mo.), a member of leadership and chairman of a subcommittee that oversees health and education funding.

Republican senators and the White House are divided both on whether to provide new money for testing and what restrictions to place on money for schools.

"Well, just a better understanding of how we can ... most effectively use federal dollars to help 135,000 public and private schools, and 6,000 colleges, open safely this fall, as much as possible in-person. That's what I would hope to do," Alexander told reporters on Monday night.