COVID-19 Aid Talks Collapse in Congress as Millions Go Without Help

White House Dem leaders make one last try on coronavirus relief deal

Coronavirus Relief Bill: No deal as clock ticks to Friday deadline

Republicans also offered a "skinny" deal that would allow legislation to be passed on two critical issues - the unemployment insurance and a moratorium on evictions - and leave the other issues to be negotiated in a later deal.

Meanwhile, Pelosi said, "We should do something big". Many states and municipalities are struggling due to decreased revenues and increased costs amid the pandemic. Trump initially played down the disease's threat and has drawn criticism for inconsistent messages on public health steps such as social distancing and masks.

The deadline has come and gone without a deal between Democrats and Republicans on another stimulus package to help Americans weather the financial fallout of the coronavirus pandemic, an outbreak experts warn will only worsen in the US.

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Senate Democratic leader Chuck Schumer announced at a news conference on Friday that they had offered to "go down a trillion" from their top-line number of $3.4 trillion, if Republicans would go up $1 trillion from their initial offer of $1 trillion.

Trump's negotiators turned them down.

Following the 90-minute meeting Senate Democratic leader Chuck Schumer told reporters it was "disappointing". "I don't think she's come off with her number, other than just made a shorter time", Meadows added.

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President Donald Trump says he is considering executive orders to address evictions and unemployment insurance, but they appear unlikely to have much impact.

President Donald Trump held a last-minute press conference on Friday night and claimed to be ready to use expansive executive power should negotiations with Democrats on another stimulus package end.

Democrats would have achieved a lower price for the bill by shortening the length of certain benefits, but not by cutting them from their proposals, a tactic that Meadows said was not palatable.

The U.S. Constitution gives Congress authority over federal spending, so Trump does not have the legal authority to issue executive orders determining how money should be spent on the coronavirus.

Democrats may believe that Americans will blame the president or recalcitrant Senate Republicans who have shown little interest in more deficit spending.

However, he mentioned, in addition they want the money. "Ideology sort of blinds them".

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Trump's authority to sign executive orders on those provisions has been questioned not only by Democrats but also by Kudlow, who previously said that the extension of the unemployment benefits "requires an act of Congress".

For instance, Democrats demand $915 billion in aid to states and municipalities, well above the $150 billion proposed by the Senate Republicans.

The extra 600-U.S. -dollar weekly unemployment benefit for every unemployed person, which benefited almost 30 million Americans, expired last week, as Republican and Democratic lawmakers failed to reach a deal over the next COVID-19 relief bill.

More than 300 US mayors this week sent a letter to Trump requesting $250 billion in direct federal aid to cities across the country. US state governors of both parties have asked Congress for another 500 billion USA dollars.

White House economic advisor Larry Kudlow told Bloomberg TV today that Trump would take executive action if there was no compromise with Congress on coronavirus relief.

Congress has already allocated some $3bn for pandemic relief so far. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell has said a boost is needed to help the US economy, but some of his fellow Republicans oppose doing anything more.

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