Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell ripped into House Speaker Nancy Pelosi on Tuesday morning, accusing the speaker of trying to force an “encyclopedia of unrelated demands” into Congress’ coronavirus stimulus package.
However, McConnell also expressed optimism that a deal was close after Senate Democrats blocked a $1.6 trillion coronavirus package for several days. (RELATED: Sen. Doug Jones Becomes Only Democrat To Vote For Cloture On Coronavirus Relief Package)
“The administration has bent over backwards to work with Democrats and address their concerns,” McConnell said. “Now, at last I believe we’re on the five yard line. It’s taken a lot of noise and a lot of rhetoric to get us here. That, of course, sometimes happens in this town.”
“At different times, we received Democrat counteroffers that demanded things like new emission standards, or tax credits for solar panels,” McConnell continued. “We saw the speaker of the House release an encyclopedia of unrelated demands as though it were a coronavirus proposal somehow. In spite of all that, we are very close.”
Leading Democrats, including Pelosi and presumptive Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden, have criticized Republican proposals for being too friendly to big business. House Democrats released their own proposal Monday, which included many provisions unrelated to the virus, including solar tax credits and increased funding for the Kennedy Center.