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Pelosi warns that, regardless of progress on a deal, Congress could also be a great distance from passing a stimulus bundle

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U.S. House of Representatives Speaker Nancy Pelosi speaks to reporters from Capitol Hill in Washington, United States, about the need for additional relief from coronavirus during her weekly press conference on October 22, 2020.

Hannah McKay | Reuters

While Democrats and the White House are on the verge of signing a coronavirus economic deal, it could take much longer to write and vote on a bill, House spokeswoman Nancy Pelosi said Thursday.

The California Democrat plans to speak to Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin again on Thursday to reach an aid deal. While the speaker said the sides were "almost there" to reach an agreement, she warned that it would take some time to implement the law as she and the Trump administration try to resolve outstanding issues.

"If we can resolve some of these issues in the next few days, it will be a while before we get the bill," Pelosi told reporters at the Capitol.

The House spokesman said the sides had still not reached consensus on several issues that had confounded negotiators over and over again during months of talks. This includes grants to state and local governments, corporate liability protection, and funding for the US census and electoral systems.

Failure to reach an agreement has made it next to impossible for lawmakers to pour money into the fight against Covid-19 and fuel a weak economy ahead of the November 3rd elections. However, Pelosi said she believed "both sides want to reach an agreement" in what she described as a "serious attempt" to provide assistance.

"We can do something great and I am still optimistic that we can do it," she said.

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Steven Gregory