Pelosi snaps at reporter and says 'it was NOT a mistake' to repeatedly refuse Covid stimulus offers
HOUSE Speaker Nancy Pelosi snapped at a reporter on Friday who asked whether she regretted repeatedly refusing to agree on Covid stimulus deals with Republicans.
At her weekly news conference, a CNN reporter asked the California Democrat if it was a mistake to reject a smaller economic relief bill that the GOP proposed months ago.
“No,” Pelosi said.
"It was not a mistake, it was a decision that has taken us to a place where we can do the right thing without other, shall we say, considerations in the legislation that we don't want.
"I'm very proud of where we are,” she added. “My chairs have worked very hard on all of this."
Pelosi refused to hold a vote on a measure from Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell this fall, saying Democrats wouldn't budge on their $2.2trillion relief bill.
On Thursday, Pelosi was accused by House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy of withholding a deal to prevent President Donald Trump from winning re-election.
"The speaker of this House has denied the ability to [get] help to the American public, simply because she wanted to determine something would happen in the election, to harm President Trump and him getting re-elected," McCarthy said.
"But what has happened is American people are hurting. That has got to stop."
On Wednesday, Democrats announced they were open to a bipartisan coronavirus relief bill.
For months, Democrats have said they wouldn’t compromise on their $2.2trillion legislation they already passed earlier this year.
The top representative in the House said that she’s now ready to compromise on a deal with Republicans due to the "game-changer" of the coronavirus vaccine and Joe Biden's election.
"That's OK now because we have a new president. A president who recognizes we need to depend on science," Pelosi said.
Pelosi and Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer this week embraced a $908billion economic relief bill to start negotiations.
The bill would establish a $300 per week jobless benefit, send $160billion to help state and local governments, boost schools and universities, revive popular “paycheck protection” subsidies for businesses, and bail out transit systems and airlines.
The deal doesn’t include another round of stimulus checks.
Pelosi and Schumer’s announcement appeared to be aimed at budging McConnell – who so far has been unwilling to abandon a $550billion Senate GOP plan that has failed twice this fall.
"In the spirit of compromise, we believe the bipartisan framework introduced by Senators yesterday should be used as the basis for immediate bipartisan, bicameral negotiations," they wrote.
"Of course, we and others will offer improvements, but the need to act is immediate and we believe that with good-faith negotiations we could come to an agreement."
Biden said the developing aid package “wouldn’t be the answer, but it would be the immediate help for a lot of things.”
He wants a relief bill to pass Congress now, with more aid to come next year.
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