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The last few months of the Trump administration were marked by an impasse between Democrats and Republicans in Congress over what should go into an economic relief bill for a country stricken with the coronavirus. The Biden administration is starting off the same way.
But with Democrats in control of the White House, House and the Senate poised at 50-50, the struggle to get bipartisan agreement may no longer prove to be an obstacle. NBC News reports:
White House economic adviser Brian Deese and Covid-19 coordinator Jeff Zientz held a call Thursday with Senate Democrats as they grapple with whether to cut a slimmed-down deal or use a process known as reconciliation to bypass the Senate’s 60-vote rule to avoid a filibuster.
“The sentiment is this: We would like Republicans to work with us to be part of the solution to deliver emergency help, but we can’t wait, it’s urgent, and we need to double-track this process,” Democrat Sen. Chris Van Hollen from Maryland, who was on the call, told reporters. “So we will continue to reach out to Republicans, but I’m a big supporter of having an insurance policy in place through reconciliation.”
Welcome to live coverage of US politics for Friday. Here’s a catch-up on where we are, and what we can expect today…