Live stimulus updates: Weary senators continue wrangling over COVID-19 relief package as debate moves past 24 straight hours

Written by on March 6, 2021


Because the Senate will get set to take up the huge COVID reduction invoice, Republicans are criticizing Democrats for failing to maneuver shortly sufficient to reopen faculties. (March 4) AP Home

WASHINGTON – Regardless of greater than 24 hours of debate that started at roughly 9 a.m. Friday and dragged on because the solar rose Saturday, senators remained engaged – however groggy – within the debate over the reduction invoice.

Some senators appeared to nod off at their desks, stirring in time to solid their votes on amendments. Others moved round, as if to remain awake. Senate Majority Chief Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., started chatting about “Baconators,” a Wendy’s breakfast sandwich, as he spoke with Virginia Democrat Mark Warner about meals choices.

At one level, New Jersey Democrat Cory Booker emerged from the close by cloakroom to vote on an modification. When Montana Democrat Jon Tester raised his hand to get the eye of the clerks, Booker tried to bat it down. After each of their votes had been recorded, they pretended to punch one another’s arms, and Booker returned to his cloakroom retreat.

A muted cheer arose in a chamber the place the typical age is 61 and a number of other are 80 or older after Kansas GOP Sen. Jerry Moran proposed that amendments going ahead be selected voice vote, a a lot quicker course of than the roll-call course of that requires the Senate clerk to learn the identify of every senator and ow they voted.

That concept didn’t take root. The following vote, an modification proposed by Sen. Marsha Blackburn, R-Tenn., to strike sure forms of Medicare hospital funds, failed – on a roll-call vote.

– Ledyard King

Senate pulls an all-nighter in debate on COVID reduction invoice 

The Senate continues to wrangle over the destiny of an enormous new COVID-19 stimulus package deal that features direct $1,400 funds after a prolonged debate that began Friday and stretched into early Saturday. 

Bleary-eyed senators are approaching their 20th straight hour of negotiating passage of President Joe Biden’s $1.9 trillion American Rescue Plan within the evenly divided Senate. Republicans are persevering with to suggest amendments to the invoice in an effort to delay passage although none of them are successful sufficient votes to go.

The Senate narrowly amended the invoice to incorporate a $300 weekly federal unemployment profit by August after West Virginia Democrat Joe Manchin objected to a provision within the Home-passed measure which included a good thing about $400 per week.

An effort to reinsert a provision raising the federal hourly minimum wage to $15 failed Friday when eight Democratic caucus members joined all Senate Republicans in voting in opposition to Vermont impartial Bernie Sanders’ proposal. The supply was included within the invoice the Home handed however was stripped by the Senate parliamentarian who dominated it was not germane to the reduction invoice and couldn’t be included.

Extra: 5 charts show the wide gap between Biden’s, Republicans’ coronavirus aid proposals

Democrats can not afford a single defection within the face of united Republican opposition to the invoice however additionally they need to stroll a fragile tightrope. If Democrats in the reduction of an excessive amount of within the Senate to safe the vote of moderates of their social gathering, they danger shedding the progressive Home votes that may be wanted to ship the ultimate invoice to Biden for his signature. 

– Ledyard King and William Cummings  


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