While both Democrats and Republicans have vocalized their support for another round of relief payments, they have yet to iron out the details of a stimulus package. At this time, both sides of the aisle are about $1 trillion away from reaching a consensus on the cost of a fifth package, but that doesn’t mean all hope is lost.
On Monday, Treasury Secretary Steven Mnhuchin told Fox Business, “We’re going to keep trying, because it’s too important for the American people. … And hopefully [Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell] will enter new legislation next week.”
President Donald Trump is open to signing a bill that comes in around $1.3 trillion, according to Newsweek, but House Speaker Nancy Pelosi has said that anything under $2.2 trillion is not sufficient to “meet the needs of workers and families.”
In the words of Forbes, discussions between Mnuchin, White House Chief of Staff Mark Meadows, Pelosi and Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer have not “yielded any progress,” thus far, with Democrats and Republicans failing to reach an agreement on aspects like unemployment insurance benefits and aid to state and local governments.
Here’s what you need to know:
A Deal Could Happen in September
It’s still possible a deal could be reached in September. However, that will likely not take place until after Labor Day, when the Senate returns from its recess. According to CNET, Mnuchin has said the IRS could start issuing checks within a week of a deal being reached.
If the Senate passes a second stimulus check when it returns on September 8 and the House is called back to vote on the deal on September 9, the president could sign the bill on September 10, and the first checks could be sent out as early as September 21.
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell remains hopeful that a bill could be passed soon despite talks being at a “stalemate.” Nexstar Media Wire quoted him as saying, “We need another one. The country needs another one.”
The Senate Says It Will Take up a New Stimulus Bill Next Week
On Tuesday, a Republican senator said that the Senate will “likely take up a new coronavirus stimulus bill next week,” according to USA Today.
Senator John Barrasso stated the goal would be to create a “targeted” bill that would not include “things that (House Speaker) Nancy Pelosi has put in her bill that are unrelated to coronavirus,” according to the outlet.
Meadows seconded Barrasso, stating that he expected a bill at some point next week. He added that the biggest sticking point in discussions over another stimulus bill was aid to state and local governments, USA Today reported.
Pelosi has made it clear that the bill is not likely to garner support from Democrats. After Pelosi spoke to Mnuchin on Tuesday via phone, she said in a statement, “Sadly, this phone call made clear that Democrats and the White House continue to have serious differences understanding the gravity of the situation that America’s working families are facing,” according to CNBC.
When Mnuchin testified before Congress on Tuesday, he reiterated that a bill needs to provide relief to the American people. He stated that he hopes to “move forward on a bipartisan basis on points we can agree upon,” CNBC reported.
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