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Politics McConnell details $500 billion COVID bill set for Wednesday vote

00:45  18 october  2020
00:45  18 october  2020 Source:   thehill.com

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Majority Leader Mitch McConnell said the Senate will pass the legislation later Wednesday . Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin agreed to enhanced oversight of a $ 500 billion bailout fund that As of Wednesday morning, though, the Senate was still drafting the final details of the text. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) makes a statement about coronavirus disease ( COVID -19) economic

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The Senate will vote on a $500 billion GOP coronavirus relief bill on Wednesday, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) announced on Saturday.

a man wearing a suit and tie looking at the camera: McConnell details $500 billion COVID bill set for Wednesday vote © Greg Nash McConnell details $500 billion COVID bill set for Wednesday vote

The bill - which is less than a third of the size of the $1.8 trillion offer from the White House - will include a federal unemployment benefit and another round of small business assistance under the Paycheck Protection Program.

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Majority Leader Mitch McConnell said the Senate will vote on a scaled back coronavirus relief bill , but Democrats are already dismissing it, saying it falls too short.

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The bill, according to McConnell, will also include more than $100 billion for schools, as well as money for testing, contact tracing and vaccine development and distribution.

McConnell will require Democratic help to get the 60 votes needed to pass the bill in the Senate. Democrats previously blocked a similar bill and are expected to do the same to the new GOP proposal.

"Nobody thinks this $500B+ proposal would resolve every problem forever. It would deliver huge amounts of additional help to workers and families right now while Washington keeps arguing over the rest," McConnell said.

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The bill is worth trillion and would provide ,200 direct payments to adults making up to ,000 a year, offer 0 billion in loans to small businesses and set up a $ 500 billion fund to lend to industries, cities and states.

“My view is: We just added another $ 500 billion to the national debt. Let’s see how things are working, McConnell continued. And yet Congress is in recess,” Lee said Tuesday on the Senate floor. “This . . . is simply unacceptable. If COVID -19 requires Congress to act then it requires Congress to convene.”

In addition to the $500 billion package, McConnell said the Senate will vote on Tuesday on a stand-alone PPP proposal. It would also need 60 votes to ultimately pass the Senate. Republicans had previously planned to hold a stand-alone PPP vote in August but scrapped it because of caucus infighting.


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McConnell's attempts to squeeze Democrats comes roughly two weeks before the Nov. 3 election where Republicans are increasingly on defense and seeking distance from President Trump, who they worry could cost the Senate GOP their majority.

The decision to force a vote on the Republican proposal comes as the Senate GOP caucus and the White House have struggled to get on the same page on the size of a fifth coronavirus relief bill.

Senate Republicans previously unveiled a $1.1 trillion package in late July, but McConnell warned that up to 20 GOP senators could oppose it. It never came up for a vote.

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McConnell is set to unveil the package on Thursday, according to a Republican unauthorized to discuss the private talks and granted anonymity. The centerpiece of the GOP effort remains McConnell ’s liability shield to protect businesses, schools and others from COVID -related lawsuits.

The 4 billion aid bill was the fourth passed to address the coronavirus crisis. The two parties have set the stage for a fight over additional funding for state and local governments reeling Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell suggested in a radio interview on Wednesday that states could go

Fifty-two of the 53 GOP senators then agreed on a similar $500 billion bill in September that was blocked by Democrats.

Negotiations are ongoing between the administration and congressional Democrats on a larger package of between $1.8 trillion and $2.2 trillion. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) are poised to speak again on Saturday evening.

McConnell, speaking in Kentucky this week, shot down the potential for a deal between $1.8 trillion and $2.2 trillion, underscoring the potential headache the administration faces in winning over Senate Republicans even if they are able to lock down a deal with Pelosi.

"I don't think so. That's where the administration is willing to go. My members think half a trillion dollars, highly targeted, is the best way to go," McConnell said, asked about the prospect of a deal totally between $1.8 trillion and $2.2 trillion.

McConnell softened those comments slightly on Saturday, saying the Senate would "consider" a deal reached between the White House and Democrats.

"If Speaker Pelosi ever lets the House reach a bipartisan agreement with the Administration, the Senate would of course consider it. But Americans need help now," McConnell said.

Protecting the profits of a few could prevent vaccine access for all .
India and South Africa have put forward a novel proposal to replace our current competition-driven approach with cooperation. At a meeting on Oct. 15, they will be asking the World Trade Organization (WTO) to temporarily relax its rules to allow for more international collaboration in the manufacture of the vaccines and medicines - even without authorization from the companies that created them. Theirs is an ambitious gambit, but one that deserves support. require(["medianetNativeAdOnArticle"], function (medianetNativeAdOnArticle) { medianetNativeAdOnArticle.

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