Trump urges Pelosi, Schumer to end ‘endless vacation’ as layoffs mount

President Trump called on House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Senate Minority Leader Charles E. Schumer Friday to cease their “endless vacation” and approve legislation that would help small businesses to keep paying their employees.

“Today people started losing their jobs because of Crazy Nancy Pelosi, Cryin’ Chuck Schumer, and the Radical Left, Do Nothing Democrats, who should immediately come back to Washington and approve legislation to help families in America,” Mr. Trump tweeted. “End your Endless Vacation!”

The $350 billion emergency Paycheck Protection Program ran out of money on Thursday, after the Small Business Administration approved loans for more than 1.6 million companies with fewer than 500 employees.

The average loan size was about $240,000.

Democratic leaders have blocked the administration’s request to add $250 billion to the PPP, demanding hundreds of billions more for hospitals and states.

The Democratic-led House left town on March 27, while the Republican-controlled Senate has been holding only “pro forma” sessions with few lawmakers in attendance. Congress is due back in Washington on May 4.

About 800,000 loan applications are “in limbo” because the money ran out, said Senate Small Business Committee Chairman Marco Rubio, Florida Republican. He said more than 70% of the loans were for less than $150,000, meaning the money went to companies with payrolls of less than $60,000 per month.

“I’m not telling you this is a perfect program,” Mr. Rubio said Friday in a video message. “What I am telling you is, there are millions of small businesses with less than 25 or 30 employees that have benefitted from the program, and there are 800,000 of them stuck in limbo because [Democrats] are playing games with the PPP money and that needs to stop. Stop playing games with people’s lives.”

In the past month, nearly 22 million Americans have lost their jobs and filed claims for unemployment benefits.

Staffers for Democratic leaders are holding talks with Treasury Secretary Steven T. Mnuchin over the impasse.

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