Trump to resume Covid-19 relief bill talks after elections
US President Donald Trump has said he is ending negotiations over a Covid-19 relief bill, and will only resume talks after the election.
“Immediately after I win, we will pass a major Stimulus Bill that focuses on hardworking Americans,” he tweeted one day after leaving hospital, the BBC reported.
Budget talks between Democratic Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin had been under way.
US stock markets fell immediately after Trump’s announcement.
It comes as cases rise in several parts of the country, and the outbreak hits top Pentagon military officials, White House staff and Republican senators.
Lawmakers from both parties had hoped for another round of Covid-19 relief spending to pass ahead of the November 3 election, but Trump’s tweet appears to have abruptly suspended that prospect.
In his tweet, the president cast blame for the talks’ collapse on Pelosi, saying that she was seeking $2.4tr “to bailout poorly run, high crime, Democrat States”.
He said he counter-offered $1.6tr but Pelosi “is not negotiating in good faith”.
“I am rejecting their request, and looking to the future of the Country,” he wrote.
He added that he had instructed Republican Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell to focus efforts on confirming his Supreme Court nominee Amy Coney Barrett.
Pelosi accused Trump of “putting himself first at the expense of the country”.
“He shows his contempt for science, his disdain for our heroese and he refuses to put money in workers’ pockets, unless his name is printed on the cheque,” she added.
Pelosi said the president “is wedded” to a $150 billion tax cut for the wealthy, but refuses to help poor children.
“Clearly, the White House is in complete disarray,” she said, calling on Trump officials to heed Powell’s advice.