Congress eyes a last-minute effort at bipartisanship over coronavirus relief
Sen. Portman lays out GOP counterproposal to Biden’s covid plan 02:48
Washington (CNN)It’s a last-minute, last-ditch effort at bipartisanship coming just days before House and Senate Democrats were expected to move on the first step of their efforts to pass a coronavirus relief bill along party lines.
The bottom line: The chances that President Joe Biden’s meeting with 10 Republican senators changes the final trajectory of Biden’s first big legislative push are slim.
But the effort underscores the tension Biden is facing between the Washington he once knew as a US senator and the one he is returning to as President. Biden is taking the meeting, and in many ways, there is no other choice for a President who built his campaign on uniting the country and compromise.
Biden’s team — and Biden himself — have made it clear that they can be flexible in some places, but the roughly $600 billion Republican plan is a drop in the bucket compared to where they want to go. Add on top of that Majority Leader Chuck Schumer’s dismissive comments on Sunday and it’s clear that a lot would have to change over the next 24 hours to make this Republican plan an actual game changer.