The second pandemic stimulus bill is currently being negotiated in the Senate. The Democrats made their offer last week and now, the GOP is making their counter-proposal. The main sticking point? The enhanced employment benefits that are set to expire. Americans who are collecting unemployment were receiving a $600 federal enhancement on their current payments.
The Republicans are not going to approve another bill that provides this level of benefits. They are looking to slash the enhancement significantly. From the looks of it, they have decided that the enhancement needs to be cut down to $200. A $450 bonus is also being offered to those who return to their old jobs.
The Democrats are placed in the position of needing to agree to a proposal very quickly. Americans have already received the last $600 enhancement payment that they are going to get and now they are wondering how they will keep a roof over their heads. Does that matter to them at all? No. They are waving off the entire proposal, calling it a total non starter.
It’s all of the usual suspects, too. Pelosi, Schumer and Sanders have already come out against the initial proposal. Sanders even tweeted that it was “DOA”. The whole process has been brought to a halt. With a wide range of federal assistance programs that are slated to expire, you would think that the Democrats would have a greater level of urgency.
Senate Democratic Leader Charles Schumer (N.Y.) and Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) spent two hours in a meeting with White House chief of staff Mark Meadows and Treasury Mnuchin. Little to no progress was made and there is nothing to report at the moment. The GOP legislation is believed to be insufficient when it comes to addressing various concerns that are taking place on the state level.
Local governments are not receiving the funding that they need, renters are not being protected from mass evictions and lower income communities are only going to continue to be hit even harder. If we had to guess, we would have to assume that the Democrats rejected the proposal before they even had a chance to take a closer look at it.
The proposal is now going to be treated as yet another manner for the Democrats to politicize. They are the ones who are acting as if they care about the American people. In reality, they would rather watch everyone suffer if it means going against the Republicans. Their efforts are not being taken seriously, so that leftists can feel like the Democrats are sticking it to the man.
The Democrats want a bill that offers $3 trillion in aid, the Republicans’ counter proposal only offers $1 trillion in aid. This is the part where both sides are supposed to work towards a more meaningful compromise but that is not what is happening. The election is rapidly approaching and the voters are not going to care about who is holding up this stimulus. They simply want a relief from the financial stress and anxiety.
The Republicans will simply tell the country that they had a deal on the table that would have kept the money flowing. The Democrats are the ones who are responsible for turning it down. This is not going to look good the next time that Joe Biden tries to tell everyone that the Democrats are the ones who truly have everyone’s best interests at heart. Time is of the essence!
This is especially true because the Senate will be going back on summer recess momentarily. Both sides need to come together and hammer out a deal. The Democrats will need to stop playing the political game for two minutes and do something to help the American people that they claim to care so much about. If the Democrats are not going to offer a reasonable compromise, they are going to have a hard time selling the new package to their voters.