Nancy Pelosi, the Democratic spokeswoman for the House of Representatives, said she was "optimistic" about a fiscal incentive deal after the Trump administration made concessions on coronavirus testing and tracking before reaching an upcoming compromise deadline .
Ms. Pelosi said she would wait until Tuesday evening for "clarity" from the White House on whether an agreement could be reached before the November 3rd elections to invest up to $ 2 billion in new government spending in the US economy. Ms. Pelosi was due to have a final round of talks with Steven Mnuchin, US Treasury Secretary, Tuesday afternoon.
She pointed to some encouraging signs. "I'm optimistic because I think we have a common value – not many – but a common value that they are using to destroy the virus for good," Ms. Pelosi told Bloomberg TV, adding that this is a "change "compared to the weekend.
However, the breakthrough in funding and measures for coronavirus mitigation measures does not guarantee that an agreement will be reached. Ms Pelosi said there was still disagreement about worker safety. The White House is pushing for corporate liability protection and funding from state and local governments, which many Republicans vigorously opposed during the negotiations.
Economists and investors have been closely following the fate of additional stimulus measures to the US economy for months in hopes that this could help sustain the recovery from the pandemic shock in the world's largest economy. An agreement is expected to include a new round of direct payments to most US families of up to $ 1,200 per adult, plus additional funding for unemployment benefits and small business facilities.
The upcoming elections in November have increased political stance in the negotiations and made the prospect of an agreement more difficult.
Mr Trump went back and forth over the need for additional relief – after abruptly pulling out of negotiations earlier this month, he later called on Republicans to "make it big" and look for a big cause. However, many Republican lawmakers were skeptical of the need for a large spending package.
If Ms. Pelosi and Mr. Mnuchin reach an agreement, it is widely expected that they will pass through the House, which is controlled by Democrats but still could face serious hurdles in the Senate, which has a Republican majority and may not cast enough votes to pass it.
If an agreement is not reached before the November 3rd elections, the drive for a deal may lose momentum depending on the outcome of the race. Joe Biden, the Democratic presidential nominee, has vowed to make new stimulus measures a top priority if he wins the election. However, if the former US vice president is victorious, he wouldn't take office until late January, which would keep the economy pending for many weeks.
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