Washington: President Donald Trump pressed for a deal on another round of pandemic aid to jolt the US economic recovery, saying the country “wants and needs” fiscal stimulus.
With Trump receiving treatment at Walter Reed military hospital outside Washington after testing positive for the coronavirus, his tweet on Saturday departed from his health to focus on weeks of partisan deadlock over another stimulus bill.
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U.S. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said Friday that negotiations with the White House will press ahead and Trump’s Covid-19 diagnosis might change the tenor of the talks by underscoring the seriousness of the pandemic.
The two sides remain far apart on how much of a boost to provide and what it should target. Democrats in the House on Thursday passed a $2.2 trillion package – down from the $3.4 million plan they passed in May – as their latest offer. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin has proposed a plan of about $1.6 trillion.
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell said Friday that the talks have “speeded up in the last few days,” though he didn’t make a prediction about the eventual outcome.
Donald Trump’s physician said the president is “doing very well” and his condition is improving, an upbeat report that was almost immediately contradicted by the disclosure from a person familiar with the matter that his vital signs were very concerning over the past 24 hours.
The president is being treated at a U.S. military hospital near Washington for Covid-19. He tweeted Saturday that he is “feeling well” and called for a stimulus deal.