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Democrats block coronavirus package, call it ‘slush fund’ for Trump

Democrats have blocked a coronavirus stimulus package, provoking criticism from Republicans who accused them of being influenced by the US Sen. Chuck Schumer and the US House Speaker Nancy Pelosi.

According to reports, on Sunday, the US senators voted 47-47 on advancing a “shell” bill, resulting in the legislation being stalled as sixty votes were needed to pass.

Democrats argue that the $1 trillion-plus package would favor corporate interests, noting that President Donald Trump and McConnell, R-Ky., are using the funds to put corporations ahead of families.

“I want everybody to fully understand if we aren’t able to act tomorrow, it will be because of our colleagues on the other side continuing to dicker when the country expects us to come together and address the problem,” McConnell said on the floor on Sunday.

He also said on Twitter Monday that “this is a national emergency. Not a partisan opportunity.”

Also, Sen. Susan Collins, R-Maine, said the move by Democrats is “irresponsible and unwise,” adding, “They are playing with fire,” according to The New York Times.

The measure includes financial help for American citizens, small businesses and badly affected industries, including airlines.

The Democrats say that the pro-business bill was “a slush fund for Donald Trump and his family” in its present form.

Meanwhile, US Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin has urged senators to reach a deal over the bill, dismissing Democratic argument the bill amounted to massive corporate welfare.

This comes as more than 35,000 people have gone down with the virus out of whom nearly 470 have died.

On Sunday, nearly one in three Americans was ordered to stay home to slow the spread of the coronavirus pandemic with Ohio, Louisiana and Delaware being the latest states to enforce broad restrictions, along with the city of Philadelphia.

Previously, New York, California, Illinois, Connecticut and New Jersey, home to 101 million Americans combined, had been implementing stay-at-home measure

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