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Photo: Nicholas Kamm/AFP/Getty Images

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) announced Thursday that the Senate will not hold any more votes until Sept. 8, though members will remain on 24-hour notice in case a coronavirus stimulus deal is reached.

Why it matters: With millions of Americans unemployed, the Trump administration and Democrats remain hopelessly deadlocked and unlikely to reach a deal any time soon.

The state of play: House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said Wednesday Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin had initiated a phone call and made clear that the White House is "not budging from their position concerning the size and scope of a legislative package."

  • “Democrats have compromised. Repeatedly, we have made clear to the Administration that we are willing to come down $1 trillion if they will come up $1 trillion," Pelosi said.
  • Meanwhile, President Trump suggested on Fox Business Thursday that he would block any stimulus bill that includes funding for the U.S. Postal Service — a key Democratic demand.

What they're saying: "If the Speaker of the House and Minority Leader of the Senate decide to finally let another rescue package move forward for workers and for families, it would take bipartisan consent to meet for legislative business sooner than scheduled," McConnell said on the Senate floor.

  • "The American people need more help. The coronavirus is not finished with our country, so Congress cannot be finished helping our people."

The other side: The House announced earlier this week that the chamber will not hold any floor votes till Sept. 14 earlier this week.

Go deeper

Nov 21, 2020 - Politics & Policy

Biden aims to deflect fights over first Cabinet picks

Photo: Jim Watson/AFP via Getty Images

President-elect Joe Biden has made his choice for secretary of state, three people familiar with the matter tell Axios, moving quickly to assemble a Senate-confirmable Cabinet even as President Trump refuses to concede the election.

The big picture: Biden already has said he's made his choice for Treasury, and both picks may be aimed at defusing confirmation fights with Senate Republicans and internal battles with Democratic progressives.

Michigan GOP leaders after Trump meeting: "We will follow the law"

Photo: Tasos Katopodis via Getty Images

Republican leaders in Michigan said they "have not yet been aware of any information that would change the outcome of the election" in the state after meeting with President Trump at the White House Friday.

Why it matters: The meeting was part of a long-shot effort by Trump and his campaign to prevent Michigan from certifying President-elect Joe Biden’s victory in the state, per NYT. But state Senate Majority Leader Mike Shirkey (R) and Speaker of the House Lee Chatfield (R) made clear they would not be intimidated into diverging from the normal election process.

Stalemate over filibuster freezes Congress

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer and Mitch McConnell's inability to quickly strike a deal on a power-sharing agreement in the new 50-50 Congress is slowing down everything from the confirmation of President Biden's nominees to Donald Trump's impeachment trial.

Why it matters: Whatever final stance Schumer takes on the stalemate, which largely comes down to Democrats wanting to use the legislative filibuster as leverage over Republicans, will be a signal of the level of hardball we should expect Democrats to play with Republicans in the new Senate.

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