McConnell, Pelosi spar over stimulus size

Voting may be over, but the bickering between Republicans and Democrats over another stimulus package is not.

Both sides appeared to dig in their heels on Friday.

Republican Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell said he's convinced the next economic stimulus package needed to be smaller, after seeing the 1 percentage point drop in the nation's unemployment rate in October to 6.9 percent, along with other data pointing to an economy that's on the mend.

"I do think we need another one, but I think it reinforces the argument that I've been making the last few months that something smaller, rather than throwing another three trillion dollars at this issue is more appropriate with it highly targeted toward things that are directly related to the coronavirus."

But that call for a narrow package was quickly rejected by Democrat House Speaker Nancy Pelosi.

"No, no, it doesn't appeal to me at all because they still have not agreed to quash the virus. If you don't crush the virus, we are still going to have to be dealing with the consequences of the virus. And that's why we have said the three pillars of our bill: to crush the virus, honor our heroes. That's our state and local. Over a million people have lost their jobs already."

And the Democrat's final pillar: money to protect jobs on Main Street.

Pelosi, who has been working to broker a deal with Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin, called on Republicans Friday to come back to the table and negotiate.

The Democrats have held firm on a $2.2 trillion economic stimulus plan.

Republicans, however, have tried and failed twice to advance a smaller stimulus plan with just a half-a-trillion dollar price tag.

Video Transcript

- Voting may be over, but the bickering between Republicans and Democrats over another stimulus package is not. Both sides appear to dig in their heels on Friday. Republican Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell said he's convinced the next economic stimulus package needed to be smaller, after seeing the 1 percentage point drop in the nation's unemployment rate in October to 6.9%, along with other data pointing to an economy that's on the mend.

MITCH MCCONNELL: That, I think, clearly ought to affect what size of any rescue package we additionally do. I do think we need another one, but I think it reinforces the argument that I've been making the last three months that something smaller, rather than throwing another $3 trillion at this issue, is more appropriate, with it highly targeted toward things that are directly related to the coronavirus.

- But that call for a narrow package was quickly rejected by House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, a Democrat.

NANCY PELOSI: No, it doesn't appeal to me at all, because they still have not agreed to crush the virus. If you don't crush the virus, we're still going to have to be dealing with the consequences of the virus. And that's why we have said, the three pillars of our bill, crush the virus, honor our heroes, that's our state and local. Over a million people have lost their jobs already.

- And the Democrats final pillar? Money to protect jobs on Main Street. Pelosi, who has been working to broker a deal with Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin, called on Republicans Friday to come back to the table and negotiate. The Democrats have held firm on a $2.2 trillion economic stimulus plan. Republicans, however, have tried and failed, twice, to advance a smaller stimulus plan with just a half-trillion-price tag.