Washington — As the coronavirus pandemic leaves thousands of Americans dead and roils the economy, Democratic House Speaker Nancy Pelosi is urging Congress to move on the next phase of coronavirus relief legislation. In an interview with MSNBC on Monday evening, Pelosi said there is a “monumental” need for the next legislative package, with a focus on helping struggling Americans and cash-strapped states and localities.

“We have a big need. It’s monumental. And therefore, it’s a great opportunity to say: let’s work together to get this done. There’s a way to open the economy based on science, testing, testing, testing and let’s get on with it. That’s what we’re here to do,” Pelosi told MSNBC anchor Chris Hayes.

Republican Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell has suggested it is unnecessary to immediately begin work on a new aid package. He said during an appearance at a livestream event for the Trump campaign that he intends to “hit pause” on coronavirus relief funds.

“We now have a debt the size of our economy,” he noted. “So I’ve said, and the president has said as well, that we have to take a pause here and take a look at what we’ve done.”

Congress in March passed three massive legislative packages to offer coronavirus relief, including a $2 trillion package which expanded unemployment insurance and created a loan program for small businesses. In April, Congress passed an interim bill to bolster funding for the loans, known as the Paycheck Protection Program, which quickly ran out of funds.

Governors and mayors across the country have called for financial assistance from the federal government. Pelosi suggested on Monday that the next legislative package include assistance for states and localities, as well as hazard pay for frontline health care workers.

“To those who would suggest a pause, I’ll say the hunger doesn’t take a pause. The rent doesn’t take a pause. The hardship doesn’t take a pause,” Pelosi told Hayes on Monday.

House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer told Democratic colleagues in a conference call Monday that the House could return to Washington to consider legislation as soon as Friday. The House is unlikely to reconvene before Friday.

McConnell and House Republicans have previously indicated that they would want to see liability protections for businesses and health care employers in the next phase of coronavirus relief legislation.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You May Also Like

Harris spotlights Trump’s ‘weird obsession’ with Obama’s legacy

Fox News Flash top headlines are here. Check out what’s clicking on Foxnews.com. Democratic vice presidential nominee Sen. Kamala Harris – campaigning in Florida on the first day of in-person early voting in the largest of the traditional general election…

Sen. Elizabeth Warren’s oldest brother dies from coronavirus

WASHINGTON — Sen. Elizabeth Warren, D-Mass., said Thursday that her oldest brother died from coronavirus earlier this week. “My oldest brother, Don Reed, died from coronavirus on Tuesday evening,” Warren, who dropped out of the presidential race last month, tweeted,…

Trump’s effort to ‘rescind’ spending in COVID/government funding bill faces hurdles

Fox News correspondent Mark Meredith has the latest from West Palm Beach, Florida. In the President’s signing statement, accompanying his signature of the COVID aid/government funding plan, he points out he wants “far less wasteful spending and more money going…

Condoleezza Rice: George Floyd’s ‘horrific death should be enough to finally move us to positive action’

Fox News Flash top headlines are here. Check out what’s clicking on Foxnews.com. Former Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice in an op-ed Thursday condemned violence but said George Floyd’s “horrific death should be enough to finally move us to positive…