Senate Republicans Are Starting to Consider a Second Round of Stimulus
Senate Republicans are starting to consider a second round of stimulus payments amid a surge in COVID-19 cases, according to CNBC.
Democrats were in support of another round of direct payments prior to the resurgence of COVID-19 in the US. President Donald Trump hasn't ruled out another round of payments, but some Senate Republicans are still opposed to the idea. “I wasn’t supportive of the first round. I don’t think I’d be supportive of the second,” said Republican Senator Ron Johnson. “This is not a classic recession that requires financial stimulus.”
House Democrats passed a $3 trillion bill including another round of direct payments to Americans, but the Senate has wanted no part of the bill. Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer stated that Senate Republicans need to “get off their hands and finally work with Democrats to quickly provide additional federal fiscal relief.”
Republican John Thune commented on Trump's thoughts as well as other Republicans about a second round of direct payments stating,“that’s something he’s talked about, and some of our members are interested in that as well. There are some of our members who aren’t interested in that, so we’ll see where that goes.” He continued, stating that Republicans need to agree on a number and other components of the bill.
Pressure for another stimulus bill has increased as states like Florida, Texas, Arizona, and California have seen a massive surge of confirmed cases and rolled back their reopening plans. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell stated that the next coronavirus bill should contain three main items, "kids, jobs, and healthcare." He stated that he wants the bill to pass before August.
President Trump stated, “I do. I support it. But it has to be done properly,” when asked about a second round of payments on Fox Business Network. Trump continued saying, “I want the money getting to people to be larger so they can spend it,” however he doesn't want it to be “an incentive not to go to work,” insinutating that the $600 federal unemployment boost isn't likely to be extended.
The first round of stimulus payments cost taxpayers $293 billion, according to the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office.