As Congress Passes Historic Relief Bill, Pelosi Already Undermining Its Importance
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi is already looking for the next bill to address the impact of the coronavirus pandemic after Congress passed a $2 trillion package Friday to help American families.
“The legislation that we passed today is a very big down payment, but we have much more to do,” the California Democrat told MSNBC’s Rachel Madow Friday.
“When they talk about this as $2 trillion and all that it does for America’s workers and families, it’s the least we could do. And we have much more to do.”
Pelosi’s comments echoed statements she made on the House floor Friday.
“We know that this cannot be our final bill,” she said, according to USA Today.
The $2 trillion bill package signed Friday has many glaring omissions that must be rectified, according to Pelosi, including expanding which workers qualify for unpaid, job-protected leave, free health care services for coronavirus patients and more funding for hospitals and health centers.
The House Speaker said that House Democrats will be working remotely as Congress works to address a “recovery stage.”
“Next we will move to recovery, and hopefully that will be soon,” she said.
The Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act will provide $1,200 payments to most American adults, along with $500 per child.
“I want to thank Democrats and Republicans for coming together, setting aside their differences, and putting America first,” President Donald Trump said before signing the bill on Friday afternoon.
The CARES Act also provides for enhanced unemployment benefits for four months, matching 100 percent of workers’ salaries prior to losing their jobs.
Additionally, the legislation provides $350 billion in small business loans for companies with 500 employees or fewer.
“Any portion of that loan used to maintain payroll, keep workers on the books or pay for rent, mortgage and existing debt could be forgiven, provided workers stay employed through the end of June,” NPR reported.
The CARES Act also includes about $500 billion in loans and grants to major corporations.
Both the House and the Senate are currently away from Washington, but Senate Majority Leader said that he might be required to call the Senate back before the April 20 return date for additional legislation, according to The Hill.
“If circumstances require the Senate to return for a vote sooner than April 20, we will provide at least 24 hours notice,” he said. “Let’s stay connected and continue to collaborate on the best ways to keep helping our states and our country through this pandemic.”
As of late Saturday morning, there were over 640,000 confirmed cases of coronavirus around the world, over 112,000 of those in the United States, according to information from Johns Hopkins.
The total number of worldwide deaths from the disease was approaching 30,000, while nearly five times that many were considered to have recovered.
The Trump administration issued guidelines on March 16 intended to slow the spread of coronavirus, but the 15-day time frame of those guidelines expires at the end of the month.
Additional guidelines are expected from the Trump administration soon, which will be based on the level of risk in each American county.
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