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Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.) tore into his fellow Republicans on Fox News Wednesday for considering a coronavirus relief package that could cost more than $1 trillion, calling on them to apologize to President Obama "for complaining that he was spending and borrowing too much" during his time in office.

Why it matters: Paul's comments, while tongue-in-cheek, underscore the divisions within the Senate Republican conference, where as many as 20 GOP senators are likely to vote against any coronavirus relief bill — even if a deal is reached between Democrats and Trump administration.

The state of play: House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said Tuesday that she's willing to settle for a price tag of $3.4 trillion, which is the cost of the relief package that House Democrats passed in May. White House chief of staff Mark Meadows said Wednesday that he's "extremely doubtful" the two sides will reach a deal if negotiations continue past Friday.

What they're saying: "Republicans and Democrats compromise every day of the year to spend money we don't have. We were already running a trillion dollars short just with our normal budgetary expenses for the year. We added $3 trillion, now they're talking about another $1-$2 trillion. We're going to borrow another $5 trillion in five months," Paul told Fox News.

  • "They might lose this election because they are acting like Democrats now. I am very upset with my colleagues. They went 8 years. They should apologize now to President Obama for complaining he was spending and borrowing too much. He was a piker compared to their borrowing and what they're doing now."

Go deeper: GOP Sen. Sasse slams Mnuchin and Pelosi as "big government Democrats"

Go deeper

Updated Nov 10, 2020 - Politics & Policy

Schumer, McConnell re-elected as Senate leaders

Photo: Stefani Reynolds/Getty Images

The Senate Democratic caucus re-elected Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) and added Sens. Cory Booker (D-N.J.) and Catherine Cortez Masto (D-Nev.) to its leadership ranks, a Senate Democratic source tells Axios.

Why it matters: The re-election of the full Senate Democratic leadership team comes after a relatively disappointing general election in which the party failed to win outright control of the Senate, despite record amounts of fundraising. Democrats still have a chance to become the Senate majority if they win a pair of Georgia runoffs in January.

Bernie Madoff dies in prison at 82

Photo: Jin Lee/Bloomberg via Getty Images

Bernie Madoff, a former investor sentenced to 150 years in prison for perpetrating the largest Ponzi scheme in U.S. history, died Wednesday at age 82, AP reports.

The big picture: Madoff pleaded guilty in 2009 to a multibillion-dollar scheme that investigators said began in the 1970s and defrauded as many as 37,000 people in 136 countries — including high-profile victims like Steven Spielberg, former New York Mets owner Fred Wilpon and actor Kevin Bacon, according to CNBC.

Ben Geman, author of Generate
1 hour ago - World

John Kerry and China's long road ahead on climate

Photo illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios. Photo: Brian Snyder/AFP via Getty Images

Yes, special climate envoy John Kerry's really in China and no, don't look for a huge breakthrough between the world's two largest carbon-emitting nations.

Driving the news: The State Department yesterday announced Kerry's visit this week, confirming plans that began emerging Saturday.