Schumer quick to deny Trump’s claim that Dems reached out to pursue Covid deal

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Screengrab MSNBC

When President Trump told reporters late Sunday that Democrats had reached out about pursing a deal on a coronavirus relief measure, the Monday morning headline wrote itself.

And sure enough, from The Hill: “Democrats deny outreach to Trump since talks collapsed.”

Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., appeared on MSNBC’s “Morning Joe” on Monday to deny that Democratic leadership reached out to the president to restart talks.

“Fables from Donald Trump. Fables. That’s what he seems to specialize in. I didn’t call him. Speaker Pelosi didn’t call him. No, we didn’t call him,” Schumer said.

“He makes these things up or hears from somebody at one of his fundraisers or at his country club,” he continued. “Oh, the Democrats are calling you. He acts like it’s true.”

Note that Schumer only denied he and Speaker Nancy Pelosi called the president.

Meanwhile, Trump took to Twitter just after the show ended.

“So now Schumer and Pelosi want to meet to make a deal. Amazing how it all works, isn’t it,” Trump tweeted. “Where have they been for the last 4 weeks when they were “hardliners”, and only wanted BAILOUT MONEY for Democrat run states and cities that are failing badly? They know my phone number!”

In response to the gridlock in Congress, Trump signed executive orders on Saturday extending COVID-19 relief — the orders include suspending payroll taxes, extending unemployment benefits of $400 per week, deferring student loan payments, and waiving interest on federally held loans through the end of 2020. A moratorium on evictions and foreclosures for all single-family mortgages insured by the FHA was also included.

Interestingly, Fox News host Chris Wallace grilled Pelosi over a breakdown in talks between the White House and Congress for a new relief bill, suggesting Sunday that the  “master negotiator” — Pelosi — blew a chance to get some of the things she wanted.

The speaker denounced the orders as “absurdly unconstitutional.”

“I understand that the president’s executive action doesn’t do all the things you want,” Wallace said. “But having no bill at all, not coming to any agreement, wasn’t gonna provide any of the things you want either. You’re known as a master negotiator, but didn’t you mess this one up?”

At the same time, Washington Examiner’s chief congressional correspondent, Susan Ferrechio, believes Trump helped his reelection chances with the executive actions.

“He definitely helped his cause by doing this because what he’s doing is two things, he is taking away a talking point from Democrats, who keep talking about Republicans as being unwilling to help people,” she said on America’s Newsroom. “He’s saying look, here I am taking action because Congress won’t help me, so I’m going around them.”

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Tom Tillison

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