Arkansas Congressman speaks out on stimulus stalemate

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FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. (KNWA/KFTA) — Congressman Steve Womack is frustrated as lawmakers now cannot agree on changes to a new COVID-19 relief bill.

“The general public ought to put a boot up the rear end of congress and demand that it get its work done on time,” Womack said.

The future of more COVID-19 relief is now uncertain as lawmakers fail to reach an agreement before Christmas.

Womack said on Monday he was on a conference call with Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin — who said the president would sign the new COVID-19 relief bill.

But after the bill passed congress, President Trump instead demanded changes.

Democrats are now joining him, asking for more money in direct payments to Americans. Republicans, meanwhile, are looking for changes to foreign aid. but both sides couldn’t reach a new agreement.

“It is my strong opinion, the single biggest threat to the republic as we know it today is the division in the body of politic that is so divided that you can’t even get the most fundamental of your work done,” Womack said.

On Monday, the house will hold a vote on increasing direct payments to Americans to $2,000.

Womack said he has a hard time accepting that idea, but the COVID-19 relief is tied to a larger bill that will fund the federal government through September — so if an agreement isn’t reached on Monday, the U.S. could see another government shutdown.

Copyright 2021 Nexstar Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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