US House Dems Craft New $2.4 Trillion Relief Package
House Democrats are back with a new stimulus proposal for $2.4 trillion, around $1 trillion less than the previous one projected, according to CNBC.
The new proposal would include enhanced unemployment assistance, direct checks for individuals, Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) funding for small- to medium-sized businesses (SMBs), assistance for airlines and some other provisions.
Talks have been ongoing and unproductive for months, but Democrats are aiming to restart them with the new plan, CNBC reported. The Republican plan is currently at around $1.3 trillion by comparison, and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi has been trying to get about $1 trillion higher than that.
The continuing collapsed talks between the parties have bypassed the expiration of the $600 a week in extra payments for unemployment, and Republicans have been wary in recent weeks of spending too much more.
The initial aid from the spring from the CARES Act funneled trillions into an economy flailing in the wake of the pandemic. But as the pandemic continued, experts began to worry that future giant spikes in viral infections could cripple the economy further as the aid from the earlier stimulus packages began to run out and people used up the money.
The U.S. has seen several months of job growth, but the unemployment rate is still sitting at 8.4 percent as of August when it was last measured, according to CNBC.
One point of contention in the talks for the past few months has been the individual payments, of which only one round of $1,200 payments was sent out in March. Of that round, millions of the payments didn’t get to the people who needed them because of incomplete banking information.
Democrats have continued to push for the checks, while Republicans have wanted to wait and see how the other financial aid packages played out in the economy. In recent weeks, Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said the President Donald Trump administration does support more individual payments, but he added that a bill needs bipartisan support to go forward.