Here We Go Again: Bipartisan Pandemic Relief in Trouble Over Same Issues

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Con­gress has been wrestling with a pan­dem­ic relief bill of vary­ing sizes since the sum­mer. Sev­er­al times, the two sides were close to a deal. But two issues always popped up to scut­tle any agree­ment between House Democ­rats and Sen­ate Republicans.Funding for state and local gov­ern­ment — “The blue-state bailout” — and lim­it­ing lia­bil­i­ty relat­ed to the coro­n­avirus — “greedy cor­po­rate bailout” — is forc­ing mem­bers to pos­ture for their bases, see­ing the issues as absolute­ly vital to passage.
The $908 bil­lion bipar­ti­san bill sug­gest­ed by the Prob­lem Solver’s Cau­cus actu­al­ly con­tains both mon­ey for states — $180 bil­lion — and lim­it­ed lia­bil­i­ty pro­tec­tions. But it’s not good enough for either side and in famil­iar fash­ion, lead­ers of both par­ties are begin­ning to threat­en to pull out of any deal unless they get their way.
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“State and local mon­ey is tied to liability …

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