Swing District Democrats Nervous About Lack of Coronavirus Aid

WASHINGTON, DC - SEPTEMBER 10: U.S. Speaker of the House Rep. Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) speaks during a news conference September 10, 2020 on Capitol Hill in Washington, DC. Speaker Pelosi held a weekly news conference to answer questions from members of the press. (Photo by Alex Wong/Getty Images)
Alex Wong/Getty Images

Democrats across swing districts are reportedly frustrated with House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) and Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer’s (D-NY) hard-line tactics and unwillingness to negotiate with Republicans on a potential coronavirus package.

Politico reported on Thursday that Democrats in Republican districts have become increasingly frustrated with Democrat leaders as they continue to oppose compromises with Republicans over a future coronavirus aid bill.

The report arises after Senate Democrats blocked a Republican bill to provide aid to those affected by the coronavirus pandemic. The bill is more targeted in its approach than Democrat proposals, such as Pelosi’s $3 trillion HEROES Act.

The House will stay in session for roughly three weeks before it adjourns, leaving little time to pass a substantial coronavirus aid bill.

Pelosi reportedly claimed that her hard-line tactics with congressional Republicans and President Donald Trump would lead to Republican concessions.

“We don’t want to go home without a bill, but don’t be a cheap date,” Pelosi said recently. “When you are in a negotiation, the last place to get weak knees is at the end.”

Schumer also tried to convince reluctant House Democrats of their negotiating strategy during a private call on Thursday.

Schumer reportedly said:

I think they will come back again. The weaker they are, the better off we are. And that means the more heat they get and the more that Mnuchin is able to persuade Trump, that if he doesn’t get something done here, it’s going to be certain that he won’t be reelected.

Rep. Derek Kilmer (D-WA), the chair of the moderate New Democrat Coalition, also suggested on Thursday that the value of passing the $3 trillion HEROES Act “is eroding.”
Rep. John Yarmuth (D-KY), the chair of the House Budget Committee, said he has called upon Democrat leadership to pass smaller bills that would address immediate concerns, such as small business loans and unemployment benefits, as compared to a larger coronavirus package.

Yarmuth said:

I think most Americans right now look at it and say, these people are just pathetic. They can’t come together when people are suffering and they can’t come together on a reasonable package. So I think showing that we’re reasonable would be important. I’d like to see us do it before we break for the campaign next month.

Swing district Democrats’ problems continue to compound as the House reportedly plans to vote in September on legislation to legalize marijuana. Many of these vulnerable Democrats believe that the vote would unleash a flood of Republican attack ads in the final weeks of the 2020 congressional elections.

One Democrat aide remarked, “We can’t fund the government, we can’t fix COVID, but yet we can pass weed.”

Sean Moran is a congressional reporter for Breitbart News. Follow him on Twitter @SeanMoran3.

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