Top Democrats in congress pushed for an additional $500B in relief for small hospitals, businesses, state, and food assistance programs.
What We Know:
- House Democrats indicated they will pass legislation that will include less money specifically for an existing loan program for small companies that the Trump administration requested.
- House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer indicated that they supported another $250 billion in loans to small companies. A spokesperson for Pelosi later clarified that House Democrats want to put $125 billion into the so-called Paycheck Protection Program — a $350 billion pool of loans approved as part of the $2 trillion emergency package passed last month. Another $125 billion would go to community-based lenders and Small Business Administration disaster assistance loans and grants.
- According to CNBC, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell aims to pass $250 billion in funding for the existing program through the Senate on Thursday. On a call with House Democrats, Pelosi said she hopes to pass her stopgap bill on Friday.
- It is unclear if the GOP-controlled Senate and Democratic-held House will go through with passing divergent legislation, or if they can agree on a compromise before the planned Senate vote Thursday.
- Democratic leaders described the “interim” bill as separate from one they aim to pass to expand the provisions of the $2 trillion aid package. The federal government has only started to implement the law, the largest emergency spending measure in U.S. history.
- “After we pass this interim emergency legislation, Congress will move to pass a CARES 2 Act that will extend and expand the bipartisan CARES Act to meet the needs of the American people,” Pelosi and Schumer said. “CARES 2 must provide transformational relief as the American people weather this assault on their lives and livelihoods.”
Pelosi also called for another round of checks to individuals and to extend the unemployment benefits for two more months.