Stimulus package agreement this week? Update on negotiations over a second check and more

The clock is ticking for Congress to achieve a deal earlier than breaking for the election.

Sarah Tew/PJDM

With Election Day now 29 days away, negotiations between Democrats and White Home officers are already underneath strain to reach a deal on a new stimulus package earlier than many Individuals cast their ballot. However now President Donald Trump’s hospitalization with COVID-19 and the Senate pausing floor action till Oct. 19 create additional obstacles that Home Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin want to beat in the event that they intend to achieve an settlement on the subsequent wave of coronavirus reduction and get the brand new invoice handed.

Over the weekend, Trump urged negotiators to achieve a deal. “Our nice USA desires & wants stimulus,” the president’s account tweeted Saturday. “Work collectively and get it carried out. Thanks!”

To put the groundwork for a deal within the Senate, Mnuchin informed Republicans to arrange for a brand new stimulus package deal as soon as midweek, The Washington Publish reported. However Pelosi, talking on Face the Nation Sunday, was guarded concerning the prospect of reaching an settlement this week: “It simply depends upon in the event that they perceive what we have now to do to crush the virus.”

After three Republican senators examined optimistic for COVID-19, Senate Majority Chief Mitch McConnell suspended his chamber until Oct. 19. As a result of Senate flooring votes are held in particular person, McConnell mentioned he would recall Senators to vote on a stimulus package deal if want be, giving them 24 hours to return to the Capitol.

With all that is occurred over the previous few days, we reply questions on how Trump’s COVID analysis might have an effect on the negotiations, the quickest a brand new invoice might realistically cross and what occurs if there is not any settlement earlier than the election. We usually replace this story. 

Learn extra: The most important things to know about stimulus checks and how taxes and stimulus checks are like two peas in a pod.

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Subsequent stimulus checks: What to anticipate


How does Trump’s hospitalization impact stimulus negotiations?

For now, that is unsure, other than Trump’s Saturday tweet highlighting his want to signal a brand new stimulus package deal into regulation. Trump may be released as soon as Monday, his medical staff mentioned Sunday. 

Though she remained circumspect Sunday, Pelosi has highlighted the best way Trump’s COVID analysis and remedy might shift the dynamics of a brand new coronavirus reduction package deal.

“Perhaps this would be the second the place folks will say, ‘OK, masks, sanitation, remedy,'” Pelosi mentioned Friday morning, earlier than the president was hospitalized. “It is likely to be a studying expertise.” 

Pelosi and Mnuchin have each examined detrimental for COVID-19. 

Previous to Trump’s hospitalization, McConnell appeared cautiously optimistic the 2 sides may be capable of discover a center floor. “I feel we’re nearer to getting an end result,” he said Oct. 2.

Pelosi ended the earlier week with a letter to House Democrats outlining the remaining areas of disagreement.

When might a brand new coronavirus reduction invoice realistically cross? 

Now that the Home is on a break following its session Oct. 2 and the Senate is on maintain, negotiators are operating out of time to achieve an settlement on one other stimulus package deal earlier than Election Day, Nov. 3. If negotiations proceed, the final day a brand new invoice might cross is up within the air, for the reason that schedules to break might be prolonged by the leaders of the Senate and Home of Representatives.

If the 2 sides do attain an settlement, it might take every week or extra earlier than it comes up for a vote, Politico said. To develop into regulation, Congress must approve the invoice and Trump (or Vice President Mike Pence, if Trump were unable to fulfill his duties) would wish to signal it into regulation.

Potential timelines for when a stimulus invoice might cross

Home votes Senate votes President indicators
Oct. 16 Oct. 19 (when Senate is again in session) Oct. 20
Oct. 23 Oct. 26 Oct. 27
Oct. 30 Oct. 31 Nov. 2
Nov. 6 Nov. 9 Nov. 10

Did not the Home cross a brand new stimulus invoice? What is going on on?

On Oct. 1, the Home of Representatives handed a revised Heroes Act that features a second stimulus check and additional benefits like enhanced unemployment benefits for tens of hundreds of thousands of Individuals. The brand new Home invoice, endorsed primarily by Democrats, has little probability of advancing by way of the Republican-controlled Senate, although.

Based on Pelosi, the vote on the revised Heroes invoice is unbiased of ongoing negotiations with Mnuchin. If Pelosi and Mnuchin agree on a brand new proposal, a brand new invoice would must be individually drafted and voted on in each the Home and Senate earlier than being signed into regulation. The entire price of the package deal and funding allocations like a toddler tax credit score have remained chief sticking factors.


Will America cross a brand new stimulus invoice? Either side agree extra support is important.

Angela Lang/PJDM

Why did the Home vote on Heroes if talks are ongoing?

The vote is assumed to supply cowl for Home Democrats as they marketing campaign and not using a new reduction invoice, a lot because the Senate did earlier in September for Republican members with its $650 billion skinny bill. Like the thin Senate invoice, this new Home proposal has little probability of advancing within the different chamber.

What do Republicans and Democrats agree on?

Proposals from both sides include one other stimulus payment of up to $1,200 for people who meet the requirements, amongst matters like support for airways, coronavirus testing and increasing the Paycheck Safety Program for companies.

If talks fail, might the president search government motion?

After talks initially collapsed on Aug. 7, Trump signed one executive order and three memoranda the next day. It is doable extra government actions could possibly be forthcoming if this closing try at negotiations fails earlier than the election, although there’s been no improvement after Trump first recommended his administration might consider another executive action to bypass Congress. 

Together with his medical situation nonetheless underneath overview, it is unclear if Trump would pursue unilateral motion at this level.

Trump’s present COVID-19 reduction executive actions tackle attempting to slow evictions, extending unemployment benefits to a lesser diploma and deferring payroll taxes till subsequent yr.


Democrats and Republicans have disagreed on how a lot reduction support ought to be included within the stimulus package deal. 

Sarah Tew/PJDM

May negotiations resume once more after election outcomes are in?

Sure. If this present dash of talks dead-ends, leaders might wish to see what occurs within the interval after the election and earlier than the presidential inauguration on Jan. 20, 2021. Pelosi and congressional Democrats might also imagine they will attain a extra favorable deal in 2021, relying on who’s elected president.

With 470 seats within the US Congress — 35 Senate seats and all 435 Home seats — up for a vote in November, any change in majority to the Home or Senate, and to the presidency, shifts the probability of sure legal guidelines being handed a technique or one other. Proper now, the Senate is led by Republicans whereas the Home is led by Democrats.

What about passing slim, standalone payments as an alternative?

If the 2 sides attain an settlement however the Senate rejects the brand new invoice, some in Washington say the best way to interrupt the stalemate is to cross a sequence of narrower payments that focus on particular areas — such because the leisure and airline industries. However that is unlikely to occur earlier than the election.

White Home Chief of Workers Mark Meadows revived the dialogue on Oct. 5. “Meadows once more requires passing stimulus reduction piecemeal — an method Democrats have rejected for months — after which stresses the significance of transferring in a ‘fiscally accountable method,'” tweeted Jeff Stein, the Washington Publish’s White Home economics reporter.

Senate Republicans made one try with its Delivering Immediate Relief to America’s Families, Schools and Small Businesses Act, however that proposal failed within the Senate. The Home additionally offered a piecemeal invoice searching for to supply funding to the US Postal Service forward of an election by which many Individuals, cautious of in-person voting throughout a lethal pandemic, will seemingly be voting by mail

So what occurs now?

For now, there’s nothing to do however wait and see how Trump’s restoration progresses and the way the continuing negotiation efforts play out. 

For extra info, this is how soon you might get your second stimulus check and what to know concerning the HEALS, CARES and Heroes stimulus invoice proposals that would assist inform a closing package deal.

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Shelby Brown