Lawmakers continue stimulus stalemate as expiration deadline looms

Politics

WASHINGTON (CNN)- Three days: That’s how long Democrats and Republicans have to make a deal  before federal unemployment benefits expire for millions of Americans.

But as lawmakers debate the next round of coronavirus relief, Capitol Hill and the White House are at a stimulus stalemate. 

The Senate Republican proposal includes incentives for schools to reopen, tax cuts, and liability protections for businesses, hospitals, and schools from lawsuits related to the pandemic.

“Republicans put forward a trillion-dollar proposal for kids, jobs, and healthcare, including direct cash to households and even more cash to unemployment people,” said Sen. Majority Leader Mitch McConnell.

The Republican plan slashes federal unemployment payments –from $600 per week to $200 per week before being replaced by a federal and state unemployment hybrid.

“Taxpayers should not pay people more not to work than people who do go back to work,” McConnell said.

Democrats also want a direct stimulus payment, but their $3 trillion dollar plan keeps unemployment benefits as is, while including housing relief and food assistance.

“If you can barely afford the rent, can’t find work, can’t feed your kids or you are fighting your family’s future, the Republican plan leaves you out in the cold,” said Minority Leader Chuck Schumer.

A final deal between Republicans and Democrats also must get the green light by President Trump, and while the road to compromise will be long and rocky, everyone agrees that the nation needs relief.

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