White House, Democrats strike tentative deal to create Space Force in exchange for federal parental leave benefits: report
The Washington Post reported Sunday that Democrats and White House negotiators had struck a bargain that would authorize the creation of the agency in exchange for a policy establishing 12 weeks of paid parental leave for federal workers.
It isn't clear if the plan will be able to win enough Republican support to pass the Senate, according to the Post, but the plan appears to have the backing of both President Trump and Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.), a rare moment of compromise amid the House's impeachment hearings.
“Trump doesn’t like the so-called ‘deep state’ and I doubt that he’s going to bed at night saying, ‘Look what I did for federal workers,’” Rep. Don Beyer (D-Va.) told the Post. “But it was a trade-off for him. And it’s good policy.”
Parental leave applies to all federal workers, including gay, lesbian and transgender parents, because of federal regulations, though the weeks of paid leave reportedly would not be allowed to be used in addition to existing benefits allowing 12 weeks of unpaid family leave time for federal workers per year.
Rep. Carolyn Maloney (D-N.Y.), a supporter of expanding paid family leave, told the Post that the deal reached by congressional and White House negotiators was an “incomplete solution, but a significant one.”
“We are one of the only civilized nations in the world that does not provide its workers with paid leave when they have children or care for sick relatives, and I have been working for decades to remedy that,” she added.