Senate majority leader Mitch McConnell said Tuesday that he could support an extension of the $ 600 unemployment benefit if Trump supported it.
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This story originally appeared on Business Insider
Senate majority leader Mitch McConnell said Tuesday that he could support an extension of the $ 600 unemployment insurance increase that has now ended – if President Donald Trump ultimately supports it.
At his weekly press conference on Republican leadership in the Senate, McConnell was asked whether spokeswoman Nancy Pelosi appeared to be drawing a red line in the weekly federal supplement and whether he could support a negotiated spending package that included it.
"Wherever this comes between the President of the United States and his team to sign it and the Democrat, who is not an insignificant minority in the Senate or a majority in the House of Representatives, I am ready to support it." McConnell told reporters. "Even if I have problems with certain parts."
The Kentucky senator added that many Republicans would likely not vote for final legislation if they restored the measure. It has generated violent GOP criticism for months.
"We know that this will be a negotiated solution," said McConnell. "It will not bring about a Kumbaya moment like March and April, when everyone voted yes. But the American people need help in the end."
McConnell's comments signal that he might be ready to reverse his position on the $ 600 advantage, although he was determined not to extend it in the past. In May, he called it "a crazy policy" and promised to delete it during a call to Republicans in the house that Politico first reported.
However, Trump does not support the renewal of the initiative and it is unclear whether his position will change as talks about a fifth economic relief package extend into the second week with little evidence of progress.
Federal unemployment insurance is one of the biggest gaps in the ongoing economic negotiations between the leading Congress Democrats and the White House.
Pelosi and the Senate Minority Chair, Chuck Schumer, are leading the discussions on a democratic side. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin and White House chief of staff Mark Meadows take the lead on the administration. McConnell has not been part of the negotiations so far.
Republicans have repeatedly criticized the program, saying that it allows many workers to earn more from the government and motivate people to stay unemployed. You launched a plan last week to cut benefits to $ 200 for two months and switch government agencies to a 70 percent wage replacement plan in October.
The $ 600 government unemployment control supplement was passed in March, and many economists attribute it to boosting the economy during a massive wave of job losses.
But the bulk payments expired on July 31, and Congress has been intensely discussing the amount by which it should be replaced. Republican Senate officials are still deeply divided over their proposal, which they unveiled four days before the end of the extended payments.
Democrats are pushing to revive the $ 600 payments by January, arguing that the economy remains weak given the lack of jobs for the unemployed. Over 30 million people receive unemployment benefits.
In the face of stalled negotiations, the Trump administration is considering a number of executive measures to address increased unemployment, a moratorium on eviction, and a reduction in payroll taxes, the Washington Post reported. However, the approach could encounter significant legal obstacles.