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Larry Kudlow: Coronavirus Relief Talks Have ‘Certainly Slowed Down But They Aren’t Ending’

Director of the National Economic Council Larry Kudlow speaks to reporters inside the Brady Press Briefing room at the White House, February 13, 2020. (Tom Brenner/Reuters)

White House economic adviser Larry Kudlow said Monday that talks for a coronavirus stimulus relief bill have “certainly slowed down,” though Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin will meet with House speaker Nancy Pelosi for another round of negotiation today. 

“The talks have certainly slowed down but they’re not ending,” Kudlow said on CNBC.

“We are close but there are still important policy issues that separate us and our team believes there has to be more compromises on the house side for us to get there,” he said.

Kudlow added that the “goalposts” had moved, echoing comments by both Pelosi and White House chief of staff Mark Meadows on Sunday. In separate appearances on CNN, Meadows and Pelosi each accused the other of “moving the goalposts” on negotiations. 

“We’ve continued to make offer after offer after offer and Nancy continues to move the goalposts,” Meadows said on CNN’s State of the Union.

In a later CNN appearance, Pelosi pushed back, saying, “They keep moving the goalposts.”

The California Democrat said the two sides have clashed over language on important policy issues including coronavirus testing, jobless benefits and state and local funding. 

“They said we’ll support the testing language with a minor touch. That was 55% of the language. We’re still waiting for the final okay. And that is a central issue in all of this,” Pelosi said. “We’re ready, we can change some words in the bill should they come back with some modifications.”

Pelosi said she sent the White House a list of her concerns on Friday that she hopes to have received responses to on Monday.

“It could happen this week in the House. But that’s up to (Senate Majority Leader) Mitch (McConnell) as to whether it would happen in the Senate and go to the President’s desk, which is our hope and prayer,” Pelosi said.

Meadows said they have found a number of Senate Republicans who would likely vote for a stimulus bill, but said, “We’re not Nancy Pelosi.”

“We’re not going to vote or opine on a bill and pass it before we’ve read it,” he said.

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