COVID-19 Relief Package: The $908 billion compromise before Dec. 18

The clock is ticking for bipartisan lawmakers to hold off a government shutdown.
Published: Dec. 10, 2020 at 6:45 PM EST
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The House passed a bill Wednesday towards another week for legislators to push forward with a Coronavirus relief package aiding families and businesses feeling the impact.

Buying time to prolong benefits that can run out at the end of the year.

But Sen. Gary Peters, D-Mi., explained that time, is not on our side.

“We cannot leave here until something is done. Folks all across Michigan continue to be impacted by the pandemic. We know our food banks are stretched. We have people that are there -- folks who may have never gone to one before are there. Our small business are hurting and we want to expand our Paycheck Protection Program,” Peters said.

An expansion of a program endorsed on the Republican side -- helping small businesses keep their workers on payroll.

Still, disagreements continue on the framework of the package.

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., expressed Republicans’ support in measures such as liability protection for organizations from COVID-19 related lawsuits.

“We know the new administration is going to be asking for a 2nd package. What I’ll recommend is we set aside liability and set aside state and local and pass those things that we can agree on knowing full well we’ll be back at this after the first of the year,” McConnell said.

House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy, R-Ca., echoed the sentiment.

“The time is now to work and there’s an opportunity to get it done now. I know for more than 40 times you (Speaker Pelosi) said no, but today we hope that you will say yes,” McCarthy said.

All parties are set to converge on an emergency relief deal by Dec. 18 -- with the nation’s economic stability tested during these critical winter months.

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