Democrats and Republicans are closing in on a massive stimulus package to combat the economic impact of the coronavirus.
In perhaps the biggest signal that an agreement was close, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., told CNBC on Tuesday morning that there is “real optimism” Congress can clinch a pact within a few hours. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell later said the bill is at the “five yard line.”
Pelosi’s remarks came after Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer told reporters late Monday that lawmakers and the Trump administration expected to reach an agreement Tuesday morning. Schumer, a Democrat of New York, had met with Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin six times Monday.
“There are still a few little differences. Neither of us think they are in any way going to get in the way of a final agreement,” Schumer said just before midnight.
Mnuchin arrived at Capitol Hill just after 9 a.m. Tuesday for a new round of negotiations with Schumer. Just before 11:00 a.m., Mnuchin, Schumer and Rep. Mark Meadows, Trump’s incoming chief of staff, went into Schumer’s office as part of the negotiations, according to a Democratic aide.
White House officials expect a deal to be reached with Congress as early as this morning, but they also cautioned that the president still needs to sign off, NBC news reported.