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Incentive Bill Negotiations: This is where a second check stands



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Will a political divide continue to hinder stimulus negotiations? There is new hope for a compromise.

Sarah Tew / CNET

Congress leaders are now working to work out details of the federal 2021 budget ahead of the Dec. 11 deadline. However, negotiate for the time being another bill for emergency economic aid with a second stimulus check walk on a separate track. Senate leader Chuck Schumer said this week that Republican and Democratic staffers will look to see if more economic aid can be part of federal funding for programs and services next year, NBC’s Leigh Ann Caldwell reported Thursday.

On Friday, Senate Leader Mitch McConnell called for support for individuals and companies “American workers must not lose their jobs unnecessarily if a second round of the job-saving Paycheck Protection Program would make a big difference to the hardest hit small businesses,” McConnell said in a statement. “Our medical system should not be denied additional support, including for spreading the life-saving vaccines that appear to be on the horizon.”

McConnell’s statement comes a few days after a similar statement by Joe Biden, when the president-elect called on Congress to come together and pay the $ 2.2 trillion Heroes Act that the House of Representatives passed in May, including one second check of as much as $ 1,200 per person in front of eligible Americans and additional resources such as improved unemployment benefits.

“We’re entering a very dark winter,” Biden said. “Things will get much more difficult before they get easier.” Biden also has its own incentive plan with a second stimulus check, but he can only respond to it afterwards he will be inaugurated on January 20.

Lawmakers participating in the lame duck session between now and Jan. 3 that the next Congress will swear in have one more chance to provide more economic aid before the end of 2020. is before the end of the year, with several federal aid programs expire at the end of December.

“There are many things that will have to wait for Joe Biden to be president, but this is not one of them,” Biden’s choice of chief of staff, Ronald Klain, said on Meet the Press.


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Part of the debate centers on to what extent each side thinks we need more coronavirus relief. Conservative economists and politicians, including McConnell, see the latest signs of economic recovery as a signal that a smaller package could take the country over The COVID-19 vaccine is ready for mass distribution.

Others disagree, pointing out that for most people, the vaccine won’t be ready until mid-2021, during which time thousands of people could die each day and the economy could falter again.

“It is essential that this bill has adequate funding and provides meaningful relief to the many Americans who are suffering,” House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Schumer wrote in a letter to McConnell on Tuesday. “In the interest of the country, we ask you to come to the table and work with us to negotiate an agreement that meets America’s needs at this critical time.”

Here’s what we know about where the negotiations are now and what could happen before the end of the year.

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Incentive control negotiations can still go up in smoke if the parties in conflict cannot reach an agreement.

Sarah Tew / CNET

What could happen before the January 20th inauguration?

Here are some possible scenarios that could play out in the coming weeks.

An incentive bill is completed before January 20: An agreement will be reached and the current House and Senate will vote before the new Congress is sworn in in January. If Trump signs it into law, stimulus checks and other help would likely begin within weeks, with certain groups receiving financial aid before the end of 2020.

An incentive agreement has been finalized and failed in the Senate or the House: In this situation, the Democrats and Republicans could make their own proposals that could be passed in their majority chambers, but failed (or not considered) by the other. In this case, Congress can try again after Biden is sworn in as president.

Some of the funding could be included in a bill that will also fund the government after Dec. 11: It is possible that some of the funding, for example an incentive check, unemployment aid or a extension of the deportation stay, could make it into a bill to keep the government funded after December 11 and prevent a shutdown. As the sitting president, Trump would have to sign the bill for it to take effect.

Conversations fall apart again until after January 20: If partisan disagreements prevent an account from being formed or adopted, they will likely reboot after the January inauguration.

To help visualize when a bill can be accepted, we’ve come up with four possible dates for an agreement. If an invoice is accepted that includes a direct payment, here follows how soon we think the IRS can send a second stimulus check.

When can an incentive bill or package pass?

House vote

Senate vote

President signs

Dec 11

Dec 12

Dec 13

February 1, 2021 (after inauguration)

February 2

February 3

February 16 (February 15 is President’s Day)

February 16

February 16

15 Mar.

Feb 16

17 Mar.

Why this $ 2.2 trillion stimulus package still matters

The House of Representatives was passed on 1 October a revised Heroes Act that included one second stimulus control and additional benefits such as improved unemployment benefits for tens of millions of Americans. The new House bill, which was primarily supported by the Democrats, was not expected to pass through the Republican-controlled Senate, and it doesn’t.

It provides the framework from which Pelosi operates, but has Biden’s backing and could play a role in future negotiations, depending on the election results that could potentially shift the balance in one way or another.

The vote was thought to provide cover for House Democrats campaigning without a new emergency bill, just as the Senate did for Republican members earlier in September with its meager $ 650 billion bill.

What Republicans and Democrats currently agree on

Proposals from both sides include another incentive payment of up to $ 1,200 for individuals that meet the requirements, including on aid to airlines, improved unemployment insurance and expansion of the Paycheck Protection Program for companies.

While the Senate’s targeted bills that did not advance don’t include incentive controls, Republicans (including those in the Senate) have backed them.

Here are more details on the biggest points of contention between the White House Republicans and the Democrats.

For more information on stimulus controls, here how quickly you now get your second stimulus check, what to do to speed up the delivery of a possible second checkand what you need to know about the HEALS, CARES and Heroes proposals for incentive laws that can help inform a final package.




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