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The Senate is scheduled to return to Washington on Monday which means that we might see a final push for a stimulus deal.
We already know that Majority Leader Mitch McConnell plans to push a “skinny” stimulus package valued at around $500 billion.
But we also know that that bill is pretty much just symbolic and stands no chance of getting passed.
It’s very similar to the first skinny bill that went out but one difference is that it appears to have some type of targeted stimulus check component which might give it better odds of passing (although I still highly doubt it will go anywhere).
The main negotiators, Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif, continue to have talks and make a little progress.
The latest news is that they spent yesterday discussing a deal that would be valued between $1.8 trillion and $2.2 trillion which is the highest range that we have heard about since the talks began.
That could potentially be a great sign that the deal is going to be made.
However, Mnuchin told the media this week that he doesn’t think a relief package will be announced before the election.
“At this point, getting something done before the election and executing on that will be difficult,” Mnuchin said.
Mnuchin, like many others, wants to get a deal out now and does not buy into the Pelosi philosophy of passing a perfected and very comprehensive package.
“Let’s not wait for the big bang where everything is perfect,” Mnuchin told CNBC.
“I don’t agree with the Speaker’s approach of we have to do all or nothing. We’re continuing to negotiate a comprehensive bill, but we want to put money into the economy now.”
The jury is still out on whether or not Republicans would agree to a large package such as the one currently being negotiated between $1.8 trillion to $2.2 trillion.
We’ve heard explicit opposition from some Republicans but there are also reports that many Republicans are secretly okay with passing a pretty large package.
President Trump noted during his town hall last night that Republicans would be on board with an agreement between his White House and Pelosi.
While it would be fantastic to get a deal done now, it does seem more likely that we will have to wait until after the election.
Democrats such as Pelosi have clearly voiced their concerns that issuing out stimulus checks would have too many political implications in favor of the president for them to feel comfortable doing it.
“A fly on the wall or wherever else it might land in the Oval Office tells me that the President only wants his name on a check to go out before Election Day and for the market to go up,” Pelosi wrote in a letter.
Therefore, I’m not expecting anything to be finalized until after the elections.
Hopefully, it does not take much longer than that because a lot of experts believe that the economy could take a serious hit as a result of these delays by Congress.
“If Congress doesn’t act, the next president will inherit a real mess,” said Harvard economist Jason Furman, a former top adviser to President Barack Obama.
“If the Mnuchin offer could be passed by the Senate — which is a huge “if” — that would be a lot better than waiting to get even more in January.”
I’ll keep you posted on any updates that happen today but it looks like next week will be another important week as the Senate returns.
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Daniel Gillaspia is the Founder of UponArriving.com and creator of the credit card app, WalletFlo. He is a former attorney turned full-time credit card rewards/travel expert and has earned and redeemed millions of miles to travel the globe. Since 2014, his content has been featured in major publications such as National Geographic, Smithsonian Magazine, Forbes, CNBC, US News, and Business Insider. Find his full bio here.