President Joe Biden will meet with a group of ten Republican senators on Monday afternoon, proposing to invest about a third of the $1.9 trillion in coronavirus aid. At the same time, Congressional Democrats are ready to move forward without the support of the Republicans.
The support of 10 Republicans in the 50-50 Senate, in which Vice President Kamala Harris has a tie-breaker, will prove critical to Biden. The legislation would hit the 60-vote threshold needed to neuter possible blocking attempts and proceed through the Senate’s normal processes if all Democrats accepted a compromise.
The White House’s invitation came hours after the legislators sent Biden a letter Sunday rooting for negotiation instead of the president try & mobilize his aid package purely on democratic votes. The House and the Senate are set to vote on a budget resolution earlier this week, laying the stage for introducing an assistance package according to rules requiring a simple majority vote in the sharply divided Senate.
The intention is to dispense with the relief package by March when extra unemployment aid and other pandemic aid expire. Biden’s meeting will mark the president’s most public participation in the talks for the next round of virus relief. In their plans for assistance, Democratic and Republican politicians sharply drift apart.
Jen Psaki, the White House Press secretary, said Sunday Biden talked to the group leader, Sen. Susan Collin, R-Maine. Although Biden wants a “complete exchange of views,” Psaki affirmed the president’s commitment to a far-reaching relief package.
The other senators invited to meet Biden include South Dakota’s Mike Rounds, Utah’s Mitt Romney, Indiana’s Todd Young, Jerry Moran, West Virginia’s Shelley Moore Capito, North Carolina’s Thom Tillis, and Lisa Murkowski, Alaska.
In their letter to challenge Biden to deliver on the unity promise, the group asserts that its counter-proposal included $160 billion of vaccinations, tests, therapies, and personal protective gear, and called for more tailored relief than Biden’s initiative to provide the majority of Americans with $1,400 stimulus checks.
The Republican Senators reiterated that they’d devised a COVID-19 relief package built on previous COVID assistance laws, all passed through bipartisan support. “With your support, we feel that our proposal reflects many of the priorities you have stated and that this plan can quickly be adopted by Congress with bipartisan support.”
Biden’s call to allow bipartite talks more time is now because the president displays impatience. His party’s more liberal wing explores a mechanism known as budget reconciliation as part of the relief package. That means the Democratic majority would suffice the bill to proceed.
In the letter, the Republican legislators remind Biden the proclamation in his opening address that “the most elusive thing about democracy are the challenges facing the nation: unity.”
However, even though Biden extended the invitations to Republican representatives, Psaki stated that 1,400 dollars in relief checks, crucial funds for reopening schools, help for small businesses and hurting families are “seriously necessary.”
Psaki’s echoes the same sentiments of some leading economists who hold that “The danger now is not doing too much, but doing too little.” “Americans of both parties are looking up to their leaders to meet moment.”
On Sunday, Biden also spoke with Chair Nancy Pelosi and Chuck Schumer, Senate leader of majority, who have been confronting increasing push from the more liberal Democrats to move forward Biden’s legislation with or without the support of Republican.
As a candidate, Biden forecasted his Senate decades and eight years as the Vice President of Barack Obama earned him legitimacy as a dealer and helped him achieve consensus about what is most important to him.
Yet Biden displayed dissatisfaction with talks less than two weeks of his administration, at a time when the economy shows signs of wear from the pandemic. Last week, close to 850,000 Americans applied for unemployment compensation, an indication that layoffs continue to be high with the current pandemic of coronavirus.
“Through support from Republicans I support COVID relief if we can get it. But there has to be a COVID relief – no ifs or buts,” Biden said on Friday.
Biden reiterated on Friday that much as he’d support passing COVID relief with support from Republicans if they could get it. But the COVID relief has to pass — no ifs, ands or buts.