Schumer, Pelosi ask McConnell to work with bipartisan Senate group's pandemic relief framework

Tim O'Donnell

Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) said in a statement Wednesday that the proposal unveiled by a bipartisan group of senators Tuesday should be the foundation for congressional negotiations on a new COVID-19 pandemic relief bill.

The $908 billion package — championed by the likes of Sens. Mitt Romney (R-Utah), Susan Collins (D-Maine), and Joe Manchin (D-W.V.) — is somewhere in between what Democratic leadership is pushing for and what Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) has been tinkering with, both in terms of total cost and content. So, while Pelosi and Schumer don't appear to be officially endorsing the centrist bill, they do see it as a starting point.

McConnell was less enthusiastic about the compromise when he addressed it Tuesday, since he's more confident the White House will sign off on his bill. His version includes fewer sticking points for Republicans, so it's unclear if he'll be swayed at all by Democrats' willingness to work with the framework.

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