Stimulus Update: Where Negotiations Stand As Pelosi's 48-Hour Deadline Expires

Speaker Nancy Pelosi's 48-hour deadline will pass without an agreement between the Democratic Party leader and the White House, but there's still hope for another round of relief before the election.

Following a series of hour-long conversations, Pelosi and Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin spoke on Tuesday afternoon in what would be the last negotiation before Pelosi's self-imposed deadline expired. The conversation provided more "common ground," Pelosi said, and the two sides demonstrated they were "serious about finding a compromise." They're expecting to resume negotiations on Wednesday.

On Saturday, Pelosi issued an ultimatum of sorts: Do a deal within 48 hours or give up on passing a package before the election. The speaker put the onus on getting a deal done before the election on the administration during an interview with ABC News' George Stephanopoulos on Sunday. Among the sticking points in the negotiations is the language of the bill and in the case of the pandemic, Pelosi said words can make all the difference.

"'Shall' is different from 'may,'" Pelosi said. "If you think of it this simple way: when you say 'may,' you're giving the president a slush fund. He may do this, he may grant, he may withhold. When you say shall ... the science tells us must happen."

The language issue surrounding the issue of testing and tracing was settled on Tuesday, Pelosi told Bloomberg TV. That fix made her "optimistic" because it showed Republicans "finally" want to crush the new coronavirus. She added that the 48 hours was designed for them to "exchange all the unresolved issues."

"Hopefully by the end of the day today we'll know where we all are," Pelosi said. "We have one little bump in the road with the Appropriations Committee because I'm not sure they'll be ready but let's hope they are. We're starting to write the bill and then can have that negotiation."

nancy pelosi deadline stimulus
Speaker of the House Rep. Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) during the Weekly News Conference on Capitol Hill on October 8, in Washington, D.C. On Tuesday, Pelosi's 48-hour deadline to reach an agreement on coronavirus relief expired but she remained hopeful there could be a deal before the election. Tasos Katopodis/Getty

Less than a week after instructing his representatives to halt talks until after the election, President Donald Trump said he wanted to not only get a deal done but put a bigger price tag on it than anyone else wanted. He signed off on a $1.8 trillion package that Pelosi refused on the basis that it failed to fully address the needs of the pandemic and those who bore the brunt of the economic fallout.

Democrats were looking at a $2.2 trillion package and Pelosi said she and Mnuchin called for the committee chairs to resolve differences they have about funding and language.

"For The People, we will ensure that help is on the way. I remain hopeful that we can reach an agreement before the election. It will be safer, bigger, and better, and it will be retroactive," Pelosi said.

Ahead of Pelosi and Mnuchin's Tuesday chat, Trump reiterated to Fox News' Fox & Friends that he wanted to "do it even bigger" than the Democrats and that he would be willing to go above the $2.2 trillion price tag. He blamed Pelosi for the reason a deal wasn't getting done, saying she "doesn't want to do it."

Another person who seemed to be standing in the way of a deal is within the president's own party: Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell. On Thursday, McConnell said he wouldn't put the $1.8 trillion package the White House proposed on the Senate floor and that 52 of the 53 Republicans in the Senate believe a $500 billion package is the "best way to go." Trump wasn't concerned about McConnell's disagreement with him over the price tag and told Fox & Friends, "he'll be on board if something comes."

On Tuesday, he adjusted his tune and said if the White House and Pelosi agreed on a bill and it passed the House, he would bring it to the floor for a vote. He didn't commit to doing so before the election, though, and cautioned against a large package as it could divide the party.

Some Republicans are on board with a larger package while others are concerned about signing on to any further relief. If it comes down to relying on support from Democrats and not Republicans to pass a package, Trump said, "I'll take all the votes you can get."