Speaker Pelosi wouldn’t give in to Trump’s ransom, so the White House finally agreed to the Democrats’ coronavirus aid package.
Speaker Pelosi announced in a letter to her colleagues provided to PoliticusUSA:
We are proud to have reached an agreement with the Administration to resolve outstanding challenges, and now will soon pass the Families First Coronavirus Response Act. We take great pride in the leadership of Chairs Lowey, Neal, Pallone, Scott, Peterson and McGovern, all the Committee and Subcommittee Chairs of Jurisdiction and the Rules Committee to craft this landmark legislation to protect families, which contains the priorities and provisions that Leader Schumer and I called for last weekend. We are especially grateful to the staffs of the Committees.
This legislation is about testing, testing, testing. To stop the spread of the virus, we have secured free coronavirus testing for everyone who needs a test, including the uninsured. We cannot fight coronavirus effectively unless everyone in our country who needs to be tested can get their test free of charge.
This legislation takes additional smart, strategic and science-based measures to put Families First:
– For families’ economic security: we secured paid emergency leave with two weeks of paid sick leave and up to three months of paid family and medical leave. We have also secured enhanced Unemployment Insurance, a step that will extend protections to furloughed workers.
– For families’ food security: we strengthened nutrition security initiatives, including SNAP, student meals, seniors’ nutrition and food banks. 22 million children rely on free or reduced-price school meals for their food security; we must ensure that they have food to eat.
– For families’ health security: we increased federal funds for Medicaid to support our local, state, tribal and territorial governments and health systems, so that they have the resources necessary to combat this crisis.
Trump bailed on an earlier deal on the bill and tried to ransom Democrats into including tax cuts and other political goodies that the president wanted. Pelosi said no, and threatened to pass the bill without Trump’s support.
Pelosi won. The White House backed down, and the American people are going to get the help that they need because Democrats are in control of the House.
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Mr. Easley is the founder/managing editor and Senior White House and Congressional correspondent for PoliticusUSA. Jason has a Bachelor’s Degree in Political Science. His graduate work focused on public policy, with a specialization in social reform movements.
Awards and Professional Memberships
Member of the Society of Professional Journalists and The American Political Science Association