News & Politics

GOP, Dems Still Far Apart on Next Round of Coronavirus Aid

AP Photo/Jose Luis Magana

Despite meetings between Democrats, the White House, and Republican senators, both sides remain at loggerheads over the size and shape of the next coronavirus relief bill.

Most of the GOP is now on board for a bill that would contain another round of individual stimulus checks. Who gets them and how much is still an issue. But Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell is committed to getting something done.

Fox News:

McConnell said he supports “another round of direct payments” to Americans – something President Trump and top members of his administration have said they, too, support.

“The economy needs another shot of adrenaline,” McConnell said Tuesday. “If we lose control of the virus…everything else will be window dressing.”

Sources told Fox News this week that an emphasis would be put on liability protections and “addressing unemployment insurance in a proper way.”

The issues of company liability protection from coronavirus lawsuits and extending some kind of additional unemployment payments for those still out of work are the two major sticking points. Republicans appear to be slowly — reluctantly — coming around to the idea of extending benefits, although the GOP wants less in benefits and an extension of only a few weeks. The president’s idea of a “back to work bonus” has been shelved for the time being.

Democrats are milking the cut-off in unemployment benefits for all it’s worth.

The key to Republican support for the package is making sure those who are without work do not make more on unemployment than they would if they were working. The additional unemployment benefit of $600 a week approved in the third coronavirus package will expire Aug. 1.

Meanwhile, House Democratic Caucus Chairman Hakeem Jeffries, D-N.Y., said it was “cruel-hearted and callous” to cut off the additional unemployment benefits without extending the program, and a “failure of leadership in the Senate and in the White House.”

Won’t all this cost a lot of money? Senator Rand Paul doesn’t recognize his colleagues as members of the party of Reagan.

“Reagan conservatives.” How quaint and old-fashioned. 

“I find it extraordinary that I came from a GOP caucus meeting that could be the Bernie Bros, or progressive caucus,” Paul, R-Ky., said Tuesday after a GOP lunch on Capitol Hill to discuss the next stimulus package.

“The debt clock in my office, we’ve gone up $3 trillion in the last few months, and going up more is irresponsible,” Paul said, as Republican senators met with members of the Trump administration to discuss a package with a price tag of $1 trillion.

“They said that President Obama is for borrowing and spending—they’re talking about spending another trillion dollars,” Paul said. “There should be a law that they are no longer allowed to talk about the debt. We are sending money to people who haven’t lost their jobs—we are losing the country.”

He added: “There has to be a voice left for fiscal conservatives.”

Most Republican members are probably wondering just what is this “debt clock” and why it can’t tell time. Perhaps it’s one of those new Apple models.

If he’s elected, Joe Biden is going to crank up taxes sky-high and there is a strong likelihood that the assets and property of the super-rich will be seized.  We will have capital flight as its never been experienced before in an industrialized society. There are plenty of places for the rich to go where they’ll be far more welcome than in Black Lives Matter America.