White House chief of staff Mark Meadows has said President Donald Trump would be willing to sign a coronavirus stimulus package amounting to $1.3 trillion, higher than the $1.1 trillion floated by Senate Republicans, according to The Hill.
“The president right now is willing to sign something at $1.3 trillion,” Meadows told reporters at the White House, saying that the figure had been offered privately to Democrats. He had previously said the White House was willing to go “north” of $1 trillion but did not offer a precise figure.
Meadows said Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) continues to demand a $2.2 trillion relief package.
Meadows and Pelosi picked up negotiations for the coronavirus package on Thursday after dropping talks three weeks ago. Pelosi said her $2.2 trillion offer is lower than the $2.4 trillion she asked for in early August.
“We have said again and again that we’re willing to come down and meet them in the middle — that would be $2.2 trillion — and when they’re ready to do that, we’ll be ready to discuss and negotiate the particulars,” Pelosi told reporters in the Capitol following the phone call with Meadows.
Since talks broke down in early August, the president has signed a series of executive orders to defer payroll tax, halt evictions and extended enhanced federal unemployment benefits for workers displaced by coronavirus.
“We not only need to help with enhanced unemployment but small businesses, aid to schools, making sure that daycare provisions are augmented in this unprecedented time,” Meadows said.
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