Senators and White House clinch deal on $2 trillion economic stimulus package

Democratic Ploy With a View to November? What Coronavirus Aid Package Delay Means                REUTERS  CARLO ALLEGRI

At the White House briefing, the public-health authorities said it was particularly important for people in the hard-hit New York City metropolitan area to quarantine themselves for 14 days, and for those who have recently left the city to do the same.

The urgently needed pandemic response measure is the largest economic rescue measure in history and is intended as a weeks- or months-long patch for an economy spiraling into recession and a nation facing a potentially ghastly toll.

Both Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell and the top Democrat, Sen.

The sudden movement on the legislation occurred after House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said Tuesday that Republicans and Democrats had seemed close to bridging disagreements that had previously stalled the package.

The package would also give direct cash payments to most Americans, expand unemployment benefits and put forth a $367 billion program to help small businesses make payroll, according to The Associate Press.

The deal still needs to be approved by the Senate and House of Representatives, but the stock market rose on Tuesday as reports came out that an agreement was imminent, with the Dow Jones Industrial Average gaining more than 2,100 points, or 11.4%.

Mnuchin had shuttled between the Capitol offices of the Senate's leaders as they and staffers hammered out the language of the bill. "But you have to protect companies like Boeing..."

Schumer and Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin - the top White House negotiator - all said they expected resolution imminently. "I'll be the oversight", President Donald Trump assured on Monday, as reported by the Post. "Our workers will be hurt!"

Democrats rejected the original package, arguing it put corporations ahead of workers, including health professionals on the front lines of the battle against a pandemic that has infected 55,000 and killed almost 800 in the USA alone. Chuck Schumer, the Democratic leader, while Republicans pressed for tens of billions of dollars for additional relief to be delivered through the Federal Emergency Management Agency, the lead federal disaster agency.

The legislation could be back on the table for a procedural vote as soon as Tuesday, Texas Senator John Cornyn said.

'Listen, we were told we are at the one-yard line last night to get this done, ' Senator Steve Daines, a Montana Republican, said on the Senate floor Tuesday night.

Every laid-off or furloughed worker would have their salary "remunerated by the federal government", Schumer said.

She suggested the measure might even pass the House by unanimous consent.

But getting 435 lawmakers to swallow a gargantuan rescue package without debate could be an uphill proposition in a sharply divided chamber.

The second provision Democrats pushed for-stricter oversight-would rein in the Treasury Department's broad discretion to dole out $500 billion in loans and loans guarantees to corporations, a departure from Republicans' original proposal that Democrats labeled a "slush fund".

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