U.S. REPUBLICANS SET TO UNVEIL CORONAVIRUS AID PROPOSAL AS TIME RUNS OUT ON JOBLESS BENEFITS

U.S. REPUBLICANS SET TO UNVEIL CORONAVIRUS AID PROPOSAL AS TIME RUNS OUT ON JOBLESS BENEFITS

U.S. SENATE REPUBLICANS ARE EXPECTED TO UNVEIL A $1 TRILLION CORONAVIRUS AID PACKAGE HAMMERED OUT WITH THE WHITE HOUSE, A STARTING POINT FOR NEGOTIATIONS WITH DEMOCRATS AS UNEMPLOYMENT BENEFITS THAT HAVE KEPT MILLIONS AMERICANS AFLOAT ARE SET TO EXPIRE.

WHITE HOUSE CHIEF OF STAFF, MARK MEADOWS TOLD REPORTERS YESTERDAY THAT THE PLAN JUST NEEDED A FEW CLARIFICATIONS BEFORE SENATE MAJORITY LEADER MITCH MCCONNELL COULD UNVEIL IT.

MEADOWS AND U.S. TREASURY SECRETARY STEVEN MNUCHIN SAID THEIR AGREEMENT IN PRINCIPLE WITH SENATE REPUBLICANS WOULD INCLUDE AN EXTENSION OF SUPPLEMENTAL UNEMPLOYMENT BENEFITS THAT AIMS TO REPLACE 70% OF LAID OFF WORKERS’ LOST WAGES.

ON FRIDAY, AN EXTRA $600 PER WEEK IN SUPPLEMENTAL UNEMPLOYMENT BENEFITS IS DUE TO EXPIRE, SEVERING A FINANCIAL LIFELINE FOR LAID-OFF WORKERS AND A KEY SUPPORT FOR CONSUMER SPENDING.

BUT THE EXTRA FUNDS – IN SOME CASES EXCEEDING A WORKERS’ FORMER WAGES – WAS A STICKING POINT FOR MANY REPUBLICANS, HELPING TO DELAY AGREEMENT DURING A WEEK OF WRANGLING OVER THE PARTY’S NEGOTIATING POSITION.

THE SENATORS DELIBERATE WITH OPINIONS AND COUNTER OPINIONS BEFORE REACTING INTO CONCLUSION.

SOME REPUBLICANS HAD COMPLAINED ABOUT THE HIGH PRICE TAG; THE FEDERAL GOVERNMENT HAS ALREADY SPENT $3.7 TRILLION TO CUSHION THE ECONOMIC BLOW FROM PANDEMIC-FORCED SHUTDOWNS.

 

SENATE MAJORITY LEADER MITCH MCCONNELL ATTEMPTED TO THREAD THE NEDDLE OF THE VOLUME OF SPENDING AND THE WHITE HOUSE’S PUSH ON A SERIES OF PRIORITIES REPUBLICANS SIMPLY DO NOT BACK.

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