Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin vowed Monday that Trump administration officials and Congress "are going to get this done" after a mammoth coronavirus relief bill stalled over the weekend.
Republican and Democratic lawmakers furiously negotiated Monday to approve nearly $2 trillion in stimulus funding that failed to get enough votes in a key Senate procedural head count Sunday evening.
“We’re very close to reaching a deal. Very close. And our goal is to reach a deal today,” Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer of New York told reporters on Capitol Hill. “And we’re hopeful, even confident, that we will meet that goal.”
Despite those assertions, politicians continued to snipe at each other while struggling to pass an unprecedented relief package designed to pump stability back into American wallets and the reeling economy.
“This has got to stop and today is the day it has to stop,” Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell of Kentucky said on the Senate floor. “The country is out of time.”
He accused Democrats of dragging their feet so they can add unneeded provisions to special interests and labor unions. Furious Democrats accused Republicans of catering to corporations while offering little to health care workers and those now unemployed by businesses closing across the country.
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said Democrats plan to introduce their own economic response package Monday, which she said “takes responsibility for the health, wages and well-being of America’s workers.”
On the Senate floor, Schumer insisted he is negotiating in good faith with Steven Mnuchin. The two spoke several times Monday. Schumer said his concerns are protecting workers and ensuring control over a massive $500 billion fund for industries.
“We have an obligation to get the details right, get them done quickly,” Schumer said. “That doesn’t mean blindly accepting a Republican-only bill.”
As markets fell, the floor descended into chaos. Republican Sen. Susan Collins of Maine sought recognition to speak. Schumer objected, which prompted Republican Sen. Tom Cotton of Arkansas to shout,“This is b*******!” and Collins to exclaim, "This is unbelievable.”