Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin says House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) is engaging in a political stunt after she sent him a letter requesting that he respond to Democratic proposoals on a COVID-19 relief bill.
In a letter posted on Twitter on Thursday, Mnuchin said, “I woke up this morning and read your letter to me in the press. Because you sent it to my office at midnight and simultaneously sent it to the press, I can unfortunately only conclude that it is a political stunt.”
“I have spoken with you almost every day for the last 45 days in an attempt to reach a serious bipartisan compromise that would benefit the hard-working Americans who have been impacted by COVID-19,” he continued.
He added, “Because your letter to me inaccurately the status of our current negotiations, I feel obliged to publicly respond.”
He continued to say that the administration has responded to Democratic proposals on a relief bill. Additionally, he said he had provided “reasonable compromise positions” on the issues of funding for local governments, liability protections, and enhanced unemployment benefits.
He also accused Pelosi of taking an “all or nothing” approach in the negotiations.
“While you accuse the administration of holding up negotiations, you refuse to bring the floor of the House stand-alone legislation to support Airline works, additional Paycheck Protection Program payments to small business, and additional direct payments that we can fun by using already approved money that we have not spent.”
“Your all or none approach is hurting hard-working Americans who need help now,” he added.
Read the letter below:
I woke up this morning and read @SpeakerPelosi’s letter to me in the press. Enclosed is my response. Her ALL OR NONE approach is hurting hard-working Americans who need help NOW! pic.twitter.com/tarhPwYmkv— Steven Mnuchin (@stevenmnuchin1) October 29, 2020
Pelosi sent a letter to Mnuchin, which was obtained by news outlets and reported on, where she pressed him to respond to the Democratic proposal for coronavirus relief, “Your responses are critical for our negotiations to continue.”
She continued, “The President’s words that ‘after the election, we will get the best stimulus package you have ever seen’ only have meaning if he can get [Senate Majority Leader] Mitch McConnell to take his hand off the pause button and get Senate Republican Chairmen moving toward agreement with their House counterparts.”
However, White House economic adviser Larry Kudlow accused Pelosi of not negotiating in good faith, “This letter mysteriously is published in the Politico before the secretary himself even gets a copy of it. I mean that to us said okay, this is not real, and we’re not going to have a compromise.”
“And, again… the business about the letter and so forth, secretary is so frustrated on the phone, and we just think she’s stringing us along. I’m sorry to say that. It’s not personal, but I don’t think she wants a deal or a compromise pre-election. So we’ll wait perhaps until post-election,” he added.