By Ovunc Kutlu
ANKARA (AA) - US House of Representatives Speaker Nancy Pelosi said Thursday that a deal is close between Democrats and Republicans on a much-awaited $2.2 trillion bipartisan economic relief bill.
"They [Republicans] haven't completely signed off on it, but I think we are just about there," Pelosi told reporters on Capitol Hill.
"If these talks did not have a purpose, and if we were not making any progress, I would not spend 5 seconds in these conversations," she said.
Pelosi and Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin continued talks Wednesday despite passing a self-imposed deadline a day earlier. Negotiations are expected to resume later Thursday.
"Americans in dire need deserve action in time for them to receive relief before their November rent is due. Republicans must step up and work with us to deliver," Pelosi said Wednesday via Twitter.
US President Donald Trump, on the other hand, argued that he does not see Pelosi "willing to do what is right for our great American workers, or our wonderful USA itself, on Stimulus."
"Their primary focus is BAILING OUT poorly run (and high crime) Democrat cities and states...," he wrote on Twitter.
Republican Senator Marco Rubio from the state of Florida said Thursday he would support a comprehensive relief bill.
"No one is going to get everything they want here and from my perspective, that means the bill on this is probably going to be higher than I want it to be and I’m very uncomfortable with that," Rubio told the CNBC network.
Rubio, however, added "I think the price of not doing something is even higher. So as long as it’s limited in some way, as long as it’s not crazy, yes I’m willing to be flexible about it because I think it’s that important."
While Democrats insist on a $2.2 trillion package, Republicans increased their offer to $1.8 trillion for a vote in the House, or they want a $500 billion alternate bill passed in the Senate. The latter was blocked by Senate Democrats.
Major differences between the parties revolve around a nationwide virus testing plan, aid to state and local governments and tax cuts for low- and middle-income families.