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On Tuesday, Senate Republicans announced the chamber will take up a vote next week on a GOP proposed stimulus package.
This vote comes as Democrats and Republicans have struggled for weeks to come to terms on a bipartisan stimulus package. The two parties did make some progress last week, with Democrats offering to come down from a $3.4 trillion ask to $2.2 trillion, meanwhile, the White House offered to come up from $1 trillion to $1.3 trillion. Nevertheless, both offers were quickly rejected.
Senate Republicans told reporters the stimulus bill they’d vote on next week would be in the $500 billion ball park. Last week Republican officials told CNBC that they may try to push forward with a limited stimulus package which would include enhanced unemployment benefits, funding for schools, Paycheck Protection Program loans, and funding for a vaccine and testing. That limited bill would exclude a second round of stimulus checks and state government funding.
But even if the bill garnered all 53 Republican votes, Democrats could still use the filibuster to block it. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer have said that a limited stimulus package, or anything below $2 trillion, is a nonstarter.
Apart from the total size of the stimulus package, the parties are also in disagreement on items including a steep increase in federal aid to state and local governments, which Democrats support, and COVID-19 lawsuit immunity for businesses, which Republicans support.