Down to the Wire

Down to the Wire

This is my stimulus update for Monday, October 19.  So yesterday I told you that Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi has set a 48-hour deadline for a stimulus deal to be reached between herself and the White House in order for a stimulus package to be passed before Election Day, her spokesperson Drew Hamill tweeted out that news Saturday night, which would make 48 hours from Saturday night, Monday night, Pelosi reiterated the 48 hours yesterday morning, I showed you the clips, so Washington Post is saying that her deadline is Tuesday, I don’t know if it’s a hard, to-the-minute 48-hour deadline, I think her point is a deal has to be reached early this week or a bill isn’t going to pass before the election.

Don’t want to read? Watch the video here!

Trump is reiterating that he would approve something larger than the $2.2 trillion the Democrats are seeking and that he believes that enough Senate Republicans would go along with any big stimulus bill agreed to by Pelosi and the White House.  But in order for a deal to be struck between the White House and Pelosi today or tomorrow, it would take some miracle, there are so many things they still disagree on from the testing language to tax credits for low-income Americans to childcare to school funding to state and local funding to census funding.

Now, we know they agree on stimulus checks, and they’re somewhat close on unemployment, we haven’t heard Pelosi lately really complain about the Republicans’ offer on unemployment, but nevertheless there are so many issues that there are still disagreements about, so I think it would take some incredible miracle for a deal to be struck today or tomorrow, meaning that if what Pelosi said is true regarding her 48-hour deadline, it would take some miracle for a stimulus bill to pass before the Election.

Now with respect to the Senate, like I told you yesterday, Mitch McConnell softened his stance somewhat with respect to a comprehensive stimulus bill, previously he literally laughed it off, or chuckled it off in the words of a New York Times reporter, but a couple days ago he said that if the White House and Pelosi strike a deal the Senate would consider it.

Mark Meadows, remember him?, Mark Meadows went even further than that this morning when asked by reporters about how Mitch McConnell would respond to a comprehensive stimulus package agreed to by the White House and Nancy Pelosi, here’s the clip:

So obviously Meadows is well aware of Senate Republicans’ reluctance to more spending on a massive scale, he and Mnuchin got grilled by Senate Republicans over the White House’s latest 1.8-trillion-dollar offer, he said he still believes there are some Republican senators who would support it, and he sent that not only would Mitch consider the bill but that Mitch would actually put it up for a vote.

Mitch McConnell is going to speak on the Senate floor this afternoon, probably talking about the standalone PPP legislation that he hopes to vote on tomorrow and the $500 trillionskinny bill that he wants to put up on Wednesday, I have little hope for either of those deals even advancing to a final vote in the Senate because I don’t think enough Dems will support them to hit the 60 votes needed to get cloture and even if they pass in the Senate, they will die in the House.

And in terms of stimulus negotiations, Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin is still in the Middle East and will speak with Nancy Pelosi again today at 3:00 P.M. Eastern Time, this is potentially the last or perhaps second-to-last time the two will speak before Pelosi’s deadline, because remember, like Pelosi said on ABC yesterday, this deadline is only in her mind to get a deal done before the election, that’s it, doesn’t mean stimulus talks are dead if a deal isn’t reached today or tomorrow, it just means, logistically, there won’t be enough time between then and the election to actually draft the comprehensive bill agreed to by both houses, call the House back, and pass it in both and it be signed by the President.

Nancy Pelosi issued another Dear Colleague letter yesterday, stating that she is optimistic and yet still listing out many, many criticisms of the Republicans’ latest stimulus offer.


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