As Congress eyes a third piece of legislation to respond to the coronavirus pandemic, Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer will put forth a sprawling proposal to set out his priorities.
The New York Democrat is working on a plan to pile at least $750 billion into efforts to combat the outbreak, his office said Monday. The plan would "get money directly into hands of American people" and include health-care affordability measures, forbearance on federal loans, a moratorium on evictions and foreclosures, assistance for small businesses and emergency child care, according to his office.
"We will need big, bold, urgent federal action to deal with this crisis," Schumer said in a statement. "The kinds of targeted measures we are putting together will mainline money into the economy and directly into the hands of families that need it most. Importantly, this proposal will also ensure our medical professionals have all the resources – including physical space and equipment – they need to provide treatment and keep Americans safe, among other people-focused initiatives."
Schumer, whose party does not control the Senate, likely will not get some of what he desires in a spending package. Even so, the senator will stake his ground early in a discussion that will take up much of Congress' attention in the coming weeks.
As lawmakers consider how to help workers and consumers walloped by the economic damage from the outbreak, the White House is also considering which damaged industries to boost.
Congress already passed an $8.3 billion emergency funding measure to help curb the coronavirus outbreak. The House passed another bill to aid with healthcare affordability, food assistance and paid leave.
The legislation is currently held up as the House aims to approve it again with technical fixes. The Senate may not vote on it until later this week.