Congress almost rises to the occasion. Almost.

Can both houses of Congress push a stimulus deal across the finish line before it's too late?

Mitch McConnell, Steven Mnuchin, and Chuck Schumer.
(Image credit: Illustrated | Getty Images, iStock)

This week, Congress reminded us yet again that it will act to do the right thing — after all other options have first been tried. After a partisan food fight erupted over the weekend over the third and by far largest phase of economic relief in the coronavirus outbreak, the Senate and White House finally reached a bipartisan agreement on the components of the bill early Wednesday morning. "Help is on the way," declared Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, and his Republican counterpart Mitch McConnell pledged to clear the decks later in the day to speed the assistance to American businesses and workers.

Or at least Congress has almost acted to do the right thing. Despite Schumer's media appearances later in the morning claiming credit for Democrats for the improvements in the CARES Act bill, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi initially declined to endorse the deal. As the House adjourned for the day, Pelosi issued a statement that House Democrats would only commit to a "review" of the agreement and its legislative text. Pelosi noted that the agreement represented a move "a great deal closer to America's workers," but she declined to commit to putting the agreement to a vote in the House — which could delay a final passage for a considerable time, if not put the agreement in jeopardy of collapse.

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Edward Morrissey

Edward Morrissey has been writing about politics since 2003 in his blog, Captain's Quarters, and now writes for His columns have appeared in the Washington Post, the New York Post, The New York Sun, the Washington Times, and other newspapers. Morrissey has a daily Internet talk show on politics and culture at Hot Air. Since 2004, Morrissey has had a weekend talk radio show in the Minneapolis/St. Paul area and often fills in as a guest on Salem Radio Network's nationally-syndicated shows. He lives in the Twin Cities area of Minnesota with his wife, son and daughter-in-law, and his two granddaughters. Morrissey's new book, GOING RED, will be published by Crown Forum on April 5, 2016.