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On The Money: Mnuchin pitches Pelosi $916B coronavirus deal with Trump's blessing | White House offers direct payments, state and local aid

On The Money: Mnuchin pitches Pelosi $916B coronavirus deal with Trump's blessing | White House offers direct payments, state and local aid
© Greg Nash

Happy Tuesday and welcome back to On The Money. I’m Sylvan Lane, and here’s your nightly guide to everything affecting your bills, bank account and bottom line.

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THE BIG DEAL—Mnuchin says he offered Pelosi $916B coronavirus relief deal with Trump's approval: Treasury Secretary Steven MnuchinSteven MnuchinPence delivers coronavirus task force report to Biden Treasury imposes additional sanctions on Cuba over allegations of 'serious human rights abuse' Treasury Department sanctions inner circle of Russian agent Derkach for election interference MORE said Tuesday that he offered Speaker Nancy PelosiNancy PelosiGOP operative installed as NSA top lawyer placed on administrative leave: reports Budowsky: Democracy won, Trump lost, President Biden inaugurated Biden taps career civil servants to acting posts at State, USAID, UN MORE (D-Calif.) a $916 billion coronavirus relief deal as both parties race to strike a deal before the end of 2020.

In a statement, Mnuchin said he pitched Pelosi Tuesday afternoon on a deal backed by President TrumpDonald TrumpClinton, Bush, Obama reflect on peaceful transition of power on Biden's Inauguration Day Arizona Republican's brothers say he is 'at least partially to blame' for Capitol violence Biden reverses Trump's freeze on .4 billion in funds MORE and marginally more expensive than the $908 billion bipartisan package the Speaker endorsed with Senate Minority Leader Charles SchumerChuck SchumerSchumer becomes new Senate majority leader US Chamber of Commerce to Biden, Congress: Business community 'ready to help' Why pretend senators can 'do impartial justice'? MORE (D-N.Y.).

I’ve got more on Mnuchin’s offer here.

The context: The White House offer comes as lawmakers and the administration face a Dec. 31 deadline to extend crucial coronavirus relief programs and an even earlier deadline to fund the government.

  • Trump and congressional leaders in both parties all agree that another round of economic aid is essential to support the U.S. economy through what could be the most excruciating stage of the pandemic. 
  • Coronavirus cases, hospitalizations and deaths have shattered records throughout the country over the past two months and are expected to climb higher thanks to holiday travel and colder weather.

The squabbling: Of course, the White House and Congress have tried and failed to agree on a coronavirus deal for several months now, and on Tuesday it seemed like some obstacles were beginning to take hold.

Read more on the push for a COVID-19 relief deal:

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LEADING THE DAY

CBO: Deficit climbs 25 percent to $430 billion through November: The federal deficit in October and November, the first two months of the 2021 fiscal year, came to $430 billion, an increase of $87 billion, or 25 percent, over the same period last year, according to the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office.

  • Deficits have soared since President Trump took office, reaching nearly $1 trillion in 2019. 
  • Extraordinary fiscal efforts to prevent an economic collapse due to the COVID-19 pandemic brought the 2020 deficit to a record-shattering $3.13 trillion.
  • For comparison, the full-year deficit in 2016 amounted to $585 billion.

The Hill’s Niv Elis walks us through the numbers here.

 

DeLauro intends to be 'strong chair' as Appropriations leader: Rep. Rosa DeLauroRosa DeLauroBiden reverses Trump's freeze on .4 billion in funds Tim Ryan, Rosa DeLauro giving free coffee and donuts to National Guard stationed at Capitol Trump seeks to freeze .4 billion of programs in final week of presidency MORE (D-Conn.), the next chairwoman of the powerful Appropriations Committee, is an unapologetic liberal who will take the gavel at a critical moment for the committee and the country.

DeLauro, 77, the second woman in history and in a row to lead the panel, will be a key player in deciding how to appropriate funding to deal with a pandemic that has already killed more than 280,000 Americans and is rapidly worsening.

“What may be different this time is the environment in which we’re all working,” DeLauro told The Hill in an interview.

She noted that the effects of the pandemic have underscored already existing problems.

“There’s a general crisis both in health and the economy, and the inequities and inequalities that have been exposed by the virus,” she said

The Hill talks to the next chairwoman here.

 

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GOOD TO KNOW

 

ODDS AND ENDS

  • A German court has ordered Tesla to stop clearing forests at a site meant for a future factory due to concerns from environmentalists that the development could endanger hibernating snakes, Reuters reported on Tuesday.