New Month, New Election, Same Intransigence From Speaker Pelosi

Despite The Beginnings Of An Economic Recovery And House Democrats Losing Ground In The Election, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi Is Still Refusing To Compromise On COVID Relief For Americans


SENATE MAJORITY LEADER MITCH McCONNELL (R-KY): “Last week, we learned the unemployment rate has fallen to 6.9%, with more than 630,000 new jobs added just in October. Remember, in the springtime, many experts estimated we would still be saddled with double-digit joblessness through the end of this year. It turns out the news is much better. Another testament to the strong economic foundations that Congress and the Trump Administration spent three years laying before this pandemic struck — and most of all, to the resilience of the American people. To be clear, our work is not finished. Too many Americans are still suffering economically, and infections are climbing across the country…. I hope our Democratic colleagues will finally put aside their all-or-nothing obstruction and let targeted pandemic relief move forward.” (Sen. McConnell, Remarks, 11/09/2020)


America’s Economy Is Beginning To Recover From The Dire Circumstances Of This Past Spring

“The U.S. labor market regained another chunk of jobs lost during the pandemic-induced recession, sending unemployment down sharply in October amid other signs the economy is recovering. Employers added 638,000 jobs last month—the sixth straight monthly gain—and the jobless rate fell a percentage point to 6.9%, the Labor Department said Friday. The job market has now recovered 12.1 million of the 22 million jobs lost in March and April, when the shutdown of businesses led the jobless rate to soar to a post-World War II high of 14.7%.” (“Drop In Jobless Rate Shows Healing U.S. Labor Market,” The Wall Street Journal, 11/06/2020)

“The economy grew at a record pace in the third quarter—increasing 7.4% over the prior quarter and at a 33.1% annual rate—recovering about two-thirds of the ground it lost earlier in the coronavirus pandemic. Gross domestic product—the value of all goods and services produced across the economy—jumped as pent-up consumer demand and government support helped power spending after disruptions related to Covid-19 eased. The increase in growth, the biggest jump in records dating to 1947, followed a record decline earlier in the pandemic when the virus disrupted business activity across the country.” (“U.S. Economy Recovered Significant Ground in Record Third-Quarter GDP Rebound,” The Wall Street Journal, 10/29/2020)

And In Spite Of Speaker Pelosi’s Boasts, House Democrats LOST Seats In Last Week’s Election

“After confidently predicting Democrats would expand their House majority, Speaker Nancy Pelosi is having to explain why it looks like they will actually lose seats.” (“Despite Pelosi’s Confident Predictions, House Democrats Lost Seats. What Happened?,” Los Angeles Times, 11/05/2020)

  • “The House is on track to have its thinnest majority in about two decades next year — and it could get worse for Democrats. Speaker Nancy Pelosi has so far lost seven incumbents in Tuesday’s election, and that number could increase to about a dozen as more votes are tallied …” (“House Dems Brace For More Losses,” Politico, 11/06/2020)

The Election Result ‘Calls Into Question Pelosi’s Strategy In The Economic Stimulus Negotiations’

“The Democrats’ lack of unified control of Washington calls into question Pelosi’s strategy in the economic stimulus negotiations she held for months with Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin. After a $3 trillion burst of spending in the spring, the two parties did not succeed in striking another deal. Pelosi held out for more …” (“Democrats’ Ambitious Agenda For 2021 Runs Into Unexpected Obstacle — McConnell’s Resilience,” The Washington Post, 11/05/2020)

“Congressional Democrats face a loss of leverage in negotiations over a new U.S. stimulus package after a disappointing showing on Election Day that left Senator Mitch McConnell potentially with a renewed mandate as majority leader.” (“Democrats Lose Leverage On Stimulus, As Smaller Bill Likely,” Bloomberg, 11/04/2020)

  • “Pelosi, who had pushed the White House into backing a bigger stimulus package, faces reduced influence after Democrats lost some of their seats to the GOP, and appeared to fall notably short of the pick-up of five to 10 seats the party expected. With a narrower majority in the new Congress, it may be difficult for Pelosi to find the consensus to pass a relief bill. If Pelosi continues to insist on a [larger] package … she will face pressure to compromise quickly from the remaining moderate Democrats who are vital to the party’s House majority.” (“Democrats Lose Leverage On Stimulus, As Smaller Bill Likely,” Bloomberg, 11/04/2020)


Yet Speaker Pelosi Is Still Rejecting Any Prospect For Compromise On COVID Relief

QUESTION: “On the stimulus question, does the election change your strategy at all? Republicans are out today saying, ‘There’s a good jobs numbers; let’s do a smaller package now.’ Does that appeal to you at all with the fact that Biden will be here next year?”
HOUSE SPEAKER NANCY PELOSI: “No, no, it doesn’t appeal to me at all … So, no, that is – that isn’t anything that they – that we should even be looking at. It wasn’t the right thing to do before.” (Speaker Pelosi, Press Conference, 11/06/2020)


FLASHBACK: Speaker Pelosi Has Refused To Compromise For Months

August & September: Speaker Pelosi Repeatedly Emphasizes That Democrats Will Not Make Any Policy Concessions: ‘We Didn’t Cut Things Out’

HOUSE SPEAKER NANCY PELOSI (D-CA): “Well, we said we would -- we would come down a trillion. Now, it doesn’t mean that we have things in there that would cut out. It means that we could talk about how long our provisions would be in effect. So we can take things down, instead of the end of September of next year, a shorter period of time and we’ll revisit all of it next year anyway. So, by changing some of the timing, we can come down.” (Fox’s “Fox News Sunday,” 8/09/2020)

  • PELOSI: “So we’re far apart, yes. Can we find some common ground? Yes. Can we cut back on our number? Not cut back on the number of children who are fed but for the length--how long the legislation lasts.” (Speaker Pelosi, Press Conference, 8/07/2020)
  • PELOSI: “[T]his is a different kind of a negotiation.  This isn’t just about dollars…. Now, we can come down in terms of the length of time for our food…. And so, it’s a values debate that we’re proud to have, but understanding we must come to agreement.  So, how do we make those reductions?  My view, one way is we have food going on for a longer time.  We could go for a shorter time and revisit the issue after the first of the year.” (MSNBC’s “Live with Kristen Welker,” 8/07/2020)

SPEAKER PELOSI: “[W]here we could perhaps change the timing so it’s less money now. That’s how we were able to come down. We didn’t cut things out we just brought it down. … And we came down $1.2 trillion, and we think we can negotiate within that …” (MSNBC’s “Morning Joe,” 9/16/2020)

September & October: Speaker Pelosi Lays Out Her All-Or-Nothing Policy: ‘Don’t Be Misled By Thinking, Oh, Well, A Little Bit Is Better Than Nothing. No, It Isn’t’

MSNBC’s ANDREA MITCHELL: “Well, is it better to go forward with some...”
HOUSE SPEAKER NANCY PELOSI (D-CA): “No, it isn’t. Now, let me -- thank you so much for that question, because I hear it a lot. And, clearly, it springs from all the good intentions we all have to help people as soon as we can. … So, don’t be misled by thinking, oh, well, a little bit is better than nothing. No, it isn’t.” (MSNBC’s “Andrea Mitchell Reports,” 9/09/2020)

SPEAKER PELOSI: “Don’t be a cheap date.” (“Democrats, Republicans Point Fingers Over Lack of Coronavirus Aid Bill,” The Wall Street Journal, 9/14/2020)

BLOOMBERG’s DAVID WESTIN: “You mentioned negotiating with the Administration.  The Administration has sent signals, they weren’t very subtle, saying they’re interested in something like $1.5 trillion compromise, which would have, as I understand it, $450 a week – not $600, but $450 a week for people for at least eight weeks, and would have $500 billion for the states.  Not the $900 [billion] you asked for, but not the $100 [billion] the Republicans have said. Isn’t something better than nothing?”
SPEAKER PELOSI: “No.” (Bloomberg, 9/18/2020)

SPEAKER PELOSI: “And so, when people say, as some of you do, ‘Isn’t something better than nothing?’ No.” (Bloomberg, 10/01/2020)

SPEAKER PELOSI: “And some of you have asked, isn’t something better than nothing? No.” (Speaker Pelosi, Press Conference, 10/01/2020)

SPEAKER PELOSI: “But again, we’re not just taking the path of least resistance because everybody says, ‘Just take something, something is better than nothing.’ No…” (MSNBC, 10/02/2020)

October: House Democrats Pass A ‘New’ Version Of Speaker Pelosi’s Bloated HEROES Act, Which Still Included The Same Unrelated Liberal Wishlist Items

“House Democrats passed a $2.2 trillion coronavirus relief bill Thursday over intense GOP opposition... The legislation, which passed 214 to 207, has no chance of advancing in the Republican-led Senate and is opposed by the White House. … The legislation the House passed Thursday is a slimmed-down version of the $3.4 trillion Heroes Act from May, including many of the same provisions, but with time frames shortened to reduce costs.” (“House Democrats Pass $2.2 Trillion Stimulus Bill Over GOP Opposition; Bipartisan Talks Continue,” The Washington Post, 10/01/2020)

The bill gave a tax break to wealthy citizens in Democratic states by rolling back the cap on state and local tax deductions:

The bill allowed illegal immigrants to receive the new rebates proposed in it:

  • PAGES 723-725: “SEC. 101. ADDITIONAL RECOVERY REBATES TO INDIVIDUALS. (a) IN GENERAL.—Subchapter B of chapter 65 of the Internal Revenue Code of 1986 is amended by inserting after section 6428 the following new section: ‘SEC. 6428A. ADDITIONAL RECOVERY REBATES TO INDIVIDUALS…. ‘(a) IN GENERAL.—In the case of an eligible individual, there shall be allowed as a credit against the tax imposed by subtitle A for the first taxable year beginning in 2020 an amount equal to the additional rebate amount determined for such taxable year…. (4) IDENTIFICATION NUMBER REQUIREMENT.—  ‘(A) IN GENERAL.—The $1,200 amount in subsection (b)(1) shall be treated as being zero unless the taxpayer includes the TIN of the taxpayer on the return of tax for the taxable year.” (U.S. House of Representatives Appropriations Committee, 9/28/2020)

The bill legalized ballot harvesting nationwide:

  • PAGE 1848: ‘‘(2) PERMITTING VOTERS TO DESIGNATE OTHER PERSON TO RETURN BALLOT.—The State— (A) shall permit a voter to designate any person to return a voted and sealed absentee  ballot to the post office, a ballot drop-off location, tribally designated building, or election office so long as the person designated to return the ballot does not receive any form of compensation based on the number of ballots that the person has returned and no individual, group, or organization provides compensation on this basis; and (B) may not put any limit on how many voted and sealed absentee ballots any designated person can return to the post office, a ballot drop off location, tribally designated building, or election office.” (U.S. House of Representatives Appropriations Committee, 9/28/2020)

And the bill required banking regulators and the GAO to issue diversity reports for cannabis-related businesses:

  • PAGES 1700-1701: (i) GAO STUDY ON DIVERSITY AND INCLUSION.— (1) STUDY.—The Comptroller General of the United States shall carry out a study on the barriers to marketplace entry, including in the licensing process, and the access to financial services for potential and existing minority-owned and women-owned cannabis-related legitimate businesses.” (U.S. House of Representatives Appropriations Committee, 9/28/2020)
  • PAGE 1700: (h) ANNUAL DIVERSITY AND INCLUSION REPORT.— The Federal banking regulators shall issue an annual report to Congress containing— (1) information and data on the availability of access to financial services for minority-owned and women-owned cannabis-related legitimate businesses.” (U.S. House of Representatives Appropriations Committee, 9/28/2020)



Related Issues: COVID-19, Appropriations