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"

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Senate Dems will boycott vote to advance Judge Amy Coney Barrett

Supreme Court nominee Amy Coney Barrett. Photo: Stefani Reynolds/Getty Images

Senate Democrats are expected to boycott Supreme Court nominee Amy Coney Barrett’s Thursday Judiciary Committee vote, Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer announced on Wednesday.

The big picture: The boycott will not prevent Barrett from moving forward in the nomination process, but the largely symbolic display is a symptom of Democrats and Republicans’ clashing over President Trump’s Supreme Court pick.

Obama: Trump emboldens people to be "cruel and divisive and racist"

Former President Barack Obama. Photo: ALEX EDELMAN / Getty Images

In his first campaign rally appearance on behalf of Joe Biden, former President Barack Obama urged Americans to vote, saying "we can't afford another four years" of a Trump presidency.

Why it matters via Axios' Hans Nichols: With less than two weeks until Election Day, Obama made his case for Biden in Pennsylvania, a state that Trump's campaign knows he needs to win.

23 mins ago - Health

Fauci says U.S. may not return to normal until 2022

Director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, Anthony Fauci, testifies during a September Senate hearing on COVID-19 in Washington, D.C. Photo: Graeme Jennings/Pool/AFP via Getty Images

NIAID director Anthony Fauci told the Journal of the American Medical Association on Wednesday he doesn't expect a COVID-19 vaccine to be ready until January 2021 or later.

What he's saying: Fauci said during the interview that the U.S. was in a "bad position" after failing to keep case numbers down post-summer. "We should have been way down in baseline and daily cases and we’re not," he said.