While the House and Senate remain at an impasse in talks for another stimulus package, President Donald Trump is calling on Congress to pass a package soon.
“Congress must now do a COVID Relief Bill,” Trump tweeted over the weekend. “Needs Democrats support. Make it big and focused. Get it done!”
The call for a new COVID-19 relief bill came a day after House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-California, also said a new stimulus package is needed soon.
“Our focus in the lame-duck continues to be on COVID relief,” Pelosi said Friday. “I urge Republicans to acknowledge the crisis and come to the table to work on COVID relief.”
Getting an agreement will likely not be any easier than it was before the election as Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Kentucky, proposed a $500 billion package last week.
McConnell’s plan stands in contrast to Pelosi and Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer’s proposed $2.4 trillion plan.
The Trump administration proposed a $1.9 trillion relief package.
Pelosi and Trump have both said that any stimulus package should include a $1,200 check for millions of Americans.
McConnell has signaled that he favors a more targeted package.
“I do think there needs to be another package,” McConnell said last week. “Hopefully we can get past the impasse we’ve had now for four or five months and get serious.”
In addition, each plan called for some federal unemployment help and funding for businesses. The plans split on liability insurance for businesses (Republicans are for it, Democrats are not) and aid to states (Democrats are for it while Republicans have said they won’t pass a bill that bails out poorly run cities and states).
Should negotiations drag on through the holidays and into the new year, President-elect Joe Biden could be tasked with trying to bring the sides together on a plan.
According to the Biden-Harris transition website, “economic recovery” is listed as a “Day One” priority.
According to the website, Biden is “going to secure further immediate relief to working families, small businesses, and communities.”
A study conducted by FranklinTempleton-Gallup showed that a new stimulus package would factor heavily into more holiday spending by consumers. Thirty-seven percent of consumers surveyed said they will probably spend less if there is no stimulus plan in place before December.