THE HOUSE is set to vote today on a $3trillion coronavirus package that would give Americans more stimulus checks – but the White House might veto the aid.
Nancy Pelosi and her fellow Democrats are backing the bill, however President Donald Trump has said it the legislation will be "dead on arrival."
The so-called Heroes Act would provide nearly $1 trillion for states, cities and tribal governments to avert layoffs and additional $200billion in “hazard pay” for essential workers, according to a summary.
It will offer a fresh round of direct payments of $1,200 to individuals, increased to up to $6,000 per household, and launch a $175billion housing assistance fund to help pay rents and mortgages.
There is also $75billion more for virus testing.
For businesses, there’s an employee retention tax credit.
Friday's vote is likely to bring roughly 400 House members back to Washington for only the third time since late March.
It will be governed by strict rules to achieve social distancing and other protective measures so that Congress does not become a breeding ground for the very illness it is trying to battle.
Unlike the previous four coronavirus response bills approved by Congress in recent months, this one appears ready to land on the House floor with little to no support from Republicans.
The gargantuan 1,800 page will would be the fifth coronavirus relief package – and has faced heavy criticism, leaving Senate Republicans not planning to vote on the new relief until June, after a Memorial Day recess.
Speaking about the legislature, Trump told reporters at the White House on Wednesday: "DOA. Dead on arrival. Of course, Nancy Pelosi knows that."
"This week, the speaker published an 1,800-page seasonal catalog of left-wing oddities and called it a coronavirus relief bill," Republican Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell said in a speech on Thursday.
McConnell and other Republican leaders in Congress have said more time is needed to gauge the effectiveness of the $3 trillion in aid already enacted into law.
McConnell has added that any new legislation must be aimed at protecting businesses from liability lawsuits as they reopen during the pandemic – at Trump's urging.
Pelosi responded to McConnell's attack, saying: "He wants us to just pause. Well, families know that hunger doesn't take a pause. Not having a job doesn't take a pause. Not being able to pay the rent doesn't take a pause."
Senator Richard Blumenthal also suggested to The New York Post the bill won't pass through as is.
He said: "Every one of [the coronavirus bills] has started out with a proposal that then has been negotiated to reach bipartisan support.
"One way or the other, they’re going to be negotiated.”
Senator Mike Rounds said: "It's political messaging only.
“There’s no chance in the Senate and they know it. Any time they start adding in attempts to provide federal funding for abortions in a COVID-19 response, we know they’re not serious.”
Others from the party were concerned by the hefty price tag.
“The scope of it actually makes it less likely we’ll even have a serious conversation,” said Senator Roger Wicker.
And Sen John Boozman said:“The thing I don’t like is the $3 trillion price tag."
Meanwhile, Democrats are divided on the proposal too, reports The Post – slimming its chances of becoming reality even further.
However, in a letter sent to House members on Thursday, Pelosi said that Republicans had previously supported many items that were included in the proposed bill.
"It is important to note that more than 80 percent of the priorities in the Heroes Act have been supported by the Republicans in the four previous COVID-19 acts of Congress.
"We are proud of how we built on that bipartisanship and look forward to negotiations For The People," she wrote.
Source: Read Full Article