The direct involvement of Trump himself and his willingness to come up with an offer well beyond the preferences of Republicans in Congress add a dynamic new element to the lengthy negotiations. Trump relied mostly on Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin and White House Chief of Staff Mark Meadows to sort out the details of the talks with Pelosi until that point.
The details in the listing remain as important, if not more important, than the top-line dollar number. The details are not known at this time, although Pelosi Deputy Chief of Staff Drew Hammill said she and Mnuchin spoke on the phone Friday afternoon and the secretary “put forward a proposal that sought to address some of the Democrats̵
“Of particular concern is the lack of agreement on a strategic plan to fight the virus,” Hammill wrote in a tweet. “We are still waiting for the administration to speak in language for these and other provisions as negotiations on the total amount of funding continue.”
A far-reaching package would seek to tackle the ongoing economic and health crises – and senior business figures, including Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell, have warned that inaction could have dire consequences.
However, it is unclear whether the White House’s new offer will result in a breakthrough in talks that have been stuck in a ditch for months.
Pelosi has repeatedly said that the actual legislative language – and where that language steers the funds – has become the most critical aspect of any deal, particularly funding states and communities with significant budget constraints, a key sticking point for the Trump administration.
And the president appeared to be undermining his own proposal on Friday afternoon when he said he would like to see a bigger stimulus than what the Democrats or his administration are currently putting forward.
“Honestly, I would like a bigger stimulus package than the Democrats or Republicans are offering,” Trump said when interviewed on “The Rush Limbaugh Show.” The president went on to say that he was “doing exactly the opposite” adding, “Maybe it will help or maybe it will harm the negotiations.”
Trump’s willingness to “make it big”, as he framed it on Friday on Twitter, carries risks within his own party. Republicans in both chambers expressed concern about the price of over $ 1 trillion. Many are against new help in general.
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell doubted the possibility of an agreement being passed before election day on Friday.
“The situation is a bit murky and I think the gloom is a result of the proximity to the election,” McConnell told reporters at an event in Kentucky. “And everyone trying to bow to political advantage. I would love to see how we rise above like we did in March and April, but I think that’s unlikely in the next three weeks.”
This story was updated on Friday with further developments.
CNN’s Austen Bundy, Lauren Fox and Allie Malloy contributed to this report.