Before the election, Republicans proposed a $1.8 trillion coronavirus relief package that would have provided immediate aid to struggling small businesses.
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., however, refused to consider it.
“Well, you talked about that $1.8 trillion bill that the White House, Steve Mnuchin, the Treasury Secretary, was working on with the House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) um, the Democrats walked away from that bill,” CNN host Jake Tapper said to Sanders.
“That’s right!” Sanders interjected.
“…They wanted $2.2 trillion and they walked away from $1.8 trillion,” Tapper continued. “Was that a mistake?”
“That’s what I’m saying,” Sanders replied. “That’s exactly what I’m saying.”
“What we need is a compromise. I know I can’t get everything that I want, but this bill really isn’t a compromise. It gives Republicans almost everything that they wanted,” Sen. Bernie Sanders says on the current Covid-19 relief proposal. We need to “negotiate a lot harder.” pic.twitter.com/lzuPqgohBc
— The Lead CNN (@TheLeadCNN) December 7, 2020
“Here was a proposal much, much larger, and Democrats are, ‘No that’s not good enough,’ and now we’re prepared to accept a proposal that has I think $350 billion dollars in new money?” Sanders continued, accusing Pelosi of abandoning a bill that was much closer to the Democratic Party’s wish-list than the current bill being debated.
Sanders is not the only Democrat questioning Pelosi’s decision to accept a bill that has much less than the previous package that she accepted.
CNN’s Manu Raju asked Pelosi a similar question last week, triggering a sharp rebuke from Pelosi.
“Let me tell you something,” Pelosi told Raju. “Don’t characterize what we did before as a mistake, as a preface to your question, if you want an answer. That was not a mistake! It was a decision, and it’s taking us to a place where we can do the right thing.”