House Speaker Nancy Pelosi ended any hopes of a Covid-19 relief bill before the Election Day, blaming the White House for failing “miserably” in a letter to House Democrats on Tuesday.
“For a long time now, Congressional Democrats have laid out a strategic plan to crush the virus. The White House and Mitch McConnell have resisted, and on Sunday, Mark Meadows told us why saying ‘We’re not going to control the pandemic,'” Pelosi said in the letter, referring to the chief of staff’s interview on CNN’s “State of the Union” this past Sunday.
“From ‘hoax’ to hundreds of thousands dead, the White House has failed miserably — not by accident, but by decision,” she wrote. “Now we know why they resisted science at the expense of lives, livelihoods and the life of our democracy. Again, it was a decision to do so.”
This news comes as Covid-19 case numbers reached a record high this past weekend and hospitalizations are climbing, more than 225,000 people have died in the United States and there is a 7.9 unemployment rate. President Donald Trump himself has also signaled that no stimulus deal is coming before the election.
Oct. 16, 202002:21
“Nancy Pelosi is only interested in bailing out badly-run, crime-ridden Democrat cities and states. That’s all she is interested in,” Trump told reporters Tuesday. “She is not interested in helping the people.”
“After the election, we will get the best stimulus package you have ever seen,” Trump added. “I think we are going to take back the House because of her.”
President Trump has sent mixed signals about the next round of relief. Earlier this month, the president effectively killed discussions on a broader stimulus package, stating it would only come until “after I win” the election. Then he reversed course and urged Congress to approve piecemeal coronavirus relief measures he would sign, including a new round of $1,200 stimulus checks for Americans.
This month, the House passed a $2.2 trillion Covid-19 relief bill. The measure passed 214-207. No Republicans supported it and 18 Democrats voted against it. The White House and Republicans, however, introduced a $1.8 trillion framework during negotiations with Pelosi, but Trump contradicted his own officials saying he would go higher than that figure.
The Cook Political Report has said that Democrats could expand their House majority in 2020. Pelosi said that the House will continue to write legislation to help Americans struggling during the pandemic.
“This week, we continue to put pen to paper, with thanks to our Committee Chairs for their mastery of the legislation and loyalty to America’s working families,” she said. “The President’s words only have meaning if he can get Mitch McConnell to take his hand off the pause button.”