White House and Senate GOP reach tentative agreement to spend $1 trillion on aid
Senate Republicans announced on Wednesday that they reached "a fundamental agreement" with Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin and the White House on how to approach providing additional pandemic aid to Americans.
The tentative deal comes amid dissent among Republicans over what more the government should be doing in response to the pandemic. Despite coming to an agreement, the negotiations may be far from over.
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell stated that he wants to keep the price tag at $1 trillion or below, but Republicans are not all in agreement. Some denounced the cost amid a soaring national debt that has grown ever-larger due to spending coming from the multi-trillion-dollar pandemic relief bills.
Whatever proposal the White House and Senate Republicans agree to will serve as the starting point for negotiations with Nancy Pelosi and House Democrats, who have already passed a $3.4 trillion bill of their own. The House bill has no chance of moving forward in the Senate.
Treasury Secretary Mnuchin told reporters that negotiators agreed to provide Americans with another wave of direct payments, though details on the matter have yet to be finalized.
The $600-a-week federal payment for jobless Americans is set to run dry at the end of the month, and with no extension, it could lag until Republicans come to a broader consensus.