Despite some disagreements, both parties see urgent need to pass coronavirus aid bill


WASHINGTON, D.C. (NEXSTAR) — The US House is taking up the historic $2 trillion coronavirus aid package. While there are some disagreements, both parties see the need to pass the bill as urgent. 

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi made a rare guarantee Thursday. 

“We will be passing the bill tomorrow,” said Pelosi, D-Calif. 

Pelosi says after Democrats took three days to negotiate changes.  The urgent package now meets the immediate needs of American workers, families and hospitals. 

“We were able to flip this over from the trickle down Republican version, to a bubble up worker-first, families-first legislation,” Pelosi said. 

Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy, R-Calif., said that was untrue. 

“That is an outright lie. The fundamental portions of this bill haven’t changed since Sunday,” he said. 

While McCarthy strongly refutes Pelosi on how the relief package came to be, both agree on the need to pass it. 

“It should not be delayed getting to the President’s desk,” McCarthy said. 

McCarthy says this package has overwhelming Republican support. But he says the process by which this vote will be taken will look different, for the safety of House members.

“We have members on both sides of the aisle who have the virus,” McCarthy said. “We have members who are quarantined.”

McCarthy says the members who make it to the Capitol will maintain social distance and the podium will be cleaned between speakers but he says that won’t stop the house from sending the bill to the president. 

Senator Kamala Harris, D-Calif., supports the bill but says the aid package falls short on paid sick leave and help for cities and states. 

“So in this moment of a public health crisis, let’s remember we still have a lot of work to do,” Harris said.

Work, she says, lawmakers must continue through the crisis.

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