Anger rises as Democrats accuse GOP of endangering Covid aid to “sabotage a Biden presidency”


To update:

The Senators reached a compromise agreement late Saturday on the Federal Reserve’s powers over emergency loans and paved the way for a vote on a final aid package on Sunday.

As the Wall Street Journal reported“Under the deal, the central bank would retain its ability to set up emergency loan programs without the approval of Congress. But it would face a tighter constraint: the Fed would not be able to replicate programs identical to those it is in.” March started the pandemic without the approval of Congress. “

Earlier:

After several days of progress toward a definitive coronavirus relief deal, the Senate GOP’s last-minute attempt to insert language limiting the Federal Reserve’s powers over emergency loans threatens to derail negotiations on a package that will extend the soon-to-run unemployment benefit would round out direct payments to many Americans and allocate funds for vaccine distribution.

Urged by Senator Pat Toomey (R-Pa.) With the assistance of Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.), The Provision would both end the Fed’s CARES-approved loan programs and limit the central bank’s ability to aid states, communities and small businesses in the future – leading to allegations that the GOP is trying to obstruct the new Biden administration.

“Proposals to sabotage President Biden and our nation’s economy are ruthless, wrong, and have no place in this legislation.”
—Sen. Elizabeth Warren

“We could have a $ 900 billion lifesaving deal in an hour, but Republicans are still insisting on a massive change in the powers of the Federal Reserve,” said Senator Chris Murphy (D-Conn.) tweeted Saturday. “Your request is not related to the Covid emergency aid – it is only about sabotaging a Biden presidency.”

While several outstanding issues are still being negotiated, the Toomey provision is seen as the only major obstacle to a final agreement. In a Senate GOP conference on Saturday, McConnell said he had no plans to deviate from his support for Toomey’s language.

“We are so close to providing Covid emergency aid” said Senate minority leader Chuck Schumer (DN.Y.). “Senator Toomey’s legislation is the only significant hurdle to reaching an agreement, and Republicans must make a decision now to help the American people.”

In a conference call with her caucus on Saturday, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) said She has worked to prevent Republicans from cutting food aid in the coronavirus relief package, the total of which is now estimated at around $ 1 trillion. When the dispute over the Toomey ruling is “settled,” said Pelosi, “everything will be fine.”

The biggest catch in the aid negotiations was the growing anger of the progressives over the inadequacy of emerging aid legislation. Senator Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) And members of the Congressional Progressive Caucus became vocally demanding Direct payments higher than the $ 600 checks currently on the table, in addition to more robust unemployment benefits.

It is unclear whether either of the two progressive requirements will be met in a final package, if they come together at all.

As the Washington Post reportedwho have favourited the “dead end” [over Toomey’s provision] seemed to widen significantly on Saturday as the congressional leadership and simple senators on both sides of the aisle broke into the issue and threatened the prospect of an agreement.

In one statement On Friday, Senator Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) Said that “after weeks of refusing to recognize Biden’s victory, some Republicans have now decided that sabotaging his presidency is more important than helping our economy recover by insisting that all Covid relief laws will also limit the ability of the Federal Reserve and the new government to help states, cities and American businesses over the next year. “

“There is no reason why the Treasury and the Fed should have fewer tools in the Biden administration to deal with an economic crisis than the Trump administration.”
—Bharat Ramamurti, Congressional Oversight Commission Congress

“Proposals to sabotage President Biden and our nation’s economy are ruthless, wrong, and have no place in this legislation,” added Warren.

On Saturday, Warren said that “Democrats should stand firm” against the Toomey language, which is still going on Let the Fed Save Wall Street.

However, some analysts argue that the Democrats should let the Toomey ruling pass and fight for Fed lending to get more than $ 900 billion in aid as soon as possible amid growing economic desperation down the street, if necessary.

“Mainstream dems really, really want the Fed to be their friend. It’s not that, ”David Dayen, editor-in-chief of The American prospectus, tweeted Saturday. “€ 900 [billion] is mainly aimed at those who need it is their friend. “

The economist Claudia Sahm argued in a Series of tweets Saturday that the “Fed and its friends are too stupid (I love you, but it’s true) to really help Main Street.”

“Get the $ 900 billion out,” said Sahm. “People are in dire straits.”

Bharat Ramamurti, a member of the Congressional Committee charged with overseeing the funds of the CARES Act, accepted that the Fed facilities, supposedly aimed at assisting states, communities and small businesses, “have not been so helpful”. But Ramamurti argued, “They could be helpful if the next Treasury Secretary urges the Fed to change its design. That is an option worth preserving.”

Because of this, Ramamurti said Saturday when he was “glad the Democrats are resisting” Toomey’s proposal.

“There is no reason why the Treasury and the Fed in the Biden administration should have fewer tools to deal with an economic crisis than the Trump administration,” added Ramamurti.

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