In a major victory for President Trump Donald John Trump On The Money: McConnell introduces third coronavirus relief proposal | Democrats seek bigger stimulus with less aid for business | Washington scrambles to prevent unemployment spike Hillicon Valley: Twitter targets coronavirus misinformation | Facebook bans sanitizer, virus test ads to prevent price gouging | DHS defines critical jobs during outbreak | Remote working apps surge Overnight Defense: ‘Tens of thousands’ of National Guard troops could be activated for coronavirus response | Hospital ships could take week to deploy | Trump says military to help Americans stuck in Peru MORE , , Senate negotiations are nearing a deal to provide $ 1, cash rebates in the phase-three stimulus deal and match the cost of the program with a major expansion of unemployment benefits.
The emerging deal being hammered out by Senate negotiators would provide one round of $ 1, 18 checks to eligible adults at a cost of approximately $ billion and match that with a similarly costly expansion of unemployment benefits – in the ballpark of $ 728 billion, according to two sources familiar with the talks.
As a result, the entire cost of the stimulus package is expected to swell well above the $ 1 trillion proposed by Trump, possibly to more than $ 1.2 trillion. The projected cost of the package is not yet certain as negotiators are waiting for a cost estimate from the Congressional Budget Office (CBO), said a person familiar with the talks.
The partisan disagreement over whether to provide direct economic assistance in the form of rebate checks or unemployment insurance was a major sticking point heading into the talks.
The progress both sides made on the issue signals that a deal is possible this weekend, even though negotiationsiators
failed to meet Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell Addison (Mitch) Mitchell McConnell Democratic leaders critici ze GOP stimulus bill as too pro-business Walmart to give cash, early bonuses to hourly employees amid coronavirus outbreak GOP senators raise concerns over smaller checks for lower earners MORE R-Ky.) Friday midnight deadline to get a deal in “principle.”
Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin Steven Terner Mnuchin Senate GOP plan provides massive tax-relief , loans for business Overnight Energy: Trump prepares to buy 250 M barrels of oil amid industry slump | Coronavirus offers reprieve from air pollution | Energy regulators split on delaying actions amid outbreak (GOP plan provides, in cash assistance amid coronavirus MORE initially proposed providing two rebate checks of $ 1, to eligible individuals at a cost of roughly $ billion to boost the economy in the midst of the coronavirus crisis; However, senate Republicans shaved down that amount, instead proposing a single payment of $ 1, to eligible adults and $ (for claimed dependents.)
“One-time payments are not what people need. What people need is a paycheck. They need ongoing income until this is done. That’s what they need, ”Sen. Debbie Stabenow
Deborah (Debbie) Ann Stabenow Democrats call for pollution reduction requirements in any aid for airlines, cruises Overnight Energy: states ask Trump to withdraw major environmental rollback | Senators grill deputy EPA pick at confirmation hearing | Senators look to recess to calm energy bill fight USDA watchdog to review forestry grant that went to logging group (MORE)
“I think we made good progress,” Sen. Ron Wyden
(Ronald (Ron) Lee Wyden ) Democratic leaders criticize GOP stimulus bill as too pro-business On The Money: McConnell introduces third coronavirus relief proposal | Democrats seek bigger stimulus with less aid for business | Washington scrambles to prevent unemployment spike Senate GOP plan Provides massive tax-relief, loans for business
“Both sides now have issues that they have to go back and check with [their colleagues,] ”Wyden said.
He also said that the Democratic proposal to significantly ramp up unemployment insurance benefits requires “some technical work that needs to be done overnight , ”And added that the CBO“ needs to give us some answers on dollars and cents. ”
As the disagreement over direct rebate checks and expanded unemployment benefits nears resolution, another major sticking point has emerged on the question of providing financial assistance to the states. A Republican source familiar with the talks said Democrats are demanding a “very high” number for financial assistance to the states, a reflection of Senate Democratic Leader Charles Schumer Charles (Chuck) Ellis Schumer
Democratic leaders criticize GOP stimulus bill as too pro-business Stimulus plan hinges on McConnell, Schumer repairing toxic relationship
Democrats call for pollution reduction requirements in any aid for airlines, cruises (MORE ) ‘s (DN.Y.) desire to provide assistance to his home state, where more than 7, (people have been diagnosed with coronavirus.
The Democratic governors of New York, New Jersey, Connecticut and Pennsylvania wrote a letter to Trump, Schumer, McConnell and Speaker N ancy Pelosi Nancy Pelosi Democratic leaders criticize GOP stimulus bill as too pro-business House Democrats eyeing much broader Phase 3 stimulus Frustration mounts at Trump’s reluctance to use emergency production powers (MORE ) (D-Calif.) Friday requesting direct cash assistance of $ 400 billion “for our region alone.”
They said the money would be needed to “account for the devastating impact of COVID – 100 on our four state budgets. ”
“We do not have the luxury of waiting for federal reimbursement – we need a cash infusion now,” they wrote.
The Democratic request for a massive infusion of financial aid to states caught GOP lawmakers somewhat by surprise; they had fully anticipated giving ground to Democrats on boosting unemployment benefits, which was a key piece of a $ billion democracy stimulus plan Schumer unveiled earlier in the week.
Schumer’s $ 823 billion stimulus proposal, unveiled to the press on Monday and Tuesday, made no mention of a $ billion-plus injection of federal aid to the states.
Instead, it was broken down into a $ billion emergency appropriation to fund programs designed to support a pandemic response and $ 500 billion to bolster the social safety net designed to help working class Americans.
The initial Democratic proposal would have allocated the $ 823 billion in pandemic response funds to paying for hospital beds, ventilators, masks and other protective equipment; child care services; and low-interest loans and loan forgiveness.
Democrats proposed spending an additional $ billion on expanding unemployment insurance, increasing federal Medicaid contributions to states , Increasing contributions to the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), and canceling monthly student debt payments.