- The Washington Times - Thursday, January 21, 2021

The House won’t meet next week, Speaker Nancy Pelosi said Thursday, canceling the first full week for the chamber under President Biden.

Mrs. Pelosi said committees will continue to press forward with their business, and she hopes to have a coronavirus package ready for the floor by the first week in February.

“As we work in these issues, we won’t be back in session until the beginning of February,” Mrs. Pelosi said.

The move drew a strong rebuke from Rep. Kevin McCarthy, Republicans’ leader,

“I just heard the majority party is now telling us to go home, one day into a new administration,” Mr. McCarthy said. “When Republicans are in the majority, we will not take the first week off.”

The House was supposed to be out of session last week but rushed back for two days to approve an article of impeachment against then-President Trump.

It was meeting Thursday to approve a bill to allow Mr. Biden’s pick for Defense Department secretary to serve.

It was supposed to be in session next week and out the first week in February, but Democrats have now reversed that order.

Mr. McCarthy said there are plenty of issues Democrats should stay in town to tackle.

Mrs. Pelosi, though, said the priority is to get a coronavirus package ready to go that first week in February, so Democrats are giving committees space to work next week.

Scheduling issues have been tricky since the start of the pandemic, with committee and floor business upended by social distancing requirements.

• Stephen Dinan can be reached at sdinan@washingtontimes.com.

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