Coronavirus stimulus checks: What options remain with GOP skinny bill out?

Coronavirus stimulus checks: What options remain with GOP skinny bill out?
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It’s been over a month since the negotiations over the next stimulus package ended in failure. Several efforts have been made since then to revive the talks and reach a deal but with little or no success. One such effort failed yesterday after Republicans’ so-called skinny proposal failed to pass the Senate. Such failures have left Americans wondering if there will be another round of stimulus checks. If you have the same question, then here are the possible options regarding the next coronavirus stimulus bill and more checks.

Coronavirus stimulus check options: one big or several smaller packages

The first option is that both sides initiate talks on a bigger package which includes coronavirus stimulus checks. With the skinny bill now out, the two sides are left with the initial packages to negotiate on. Democrats are demanding $2.2 trillion (down from their initial demand of $3 trillion), while the White House has already offered $1.3 trillion and has hinted at possibly going up to $1.5 trillion.

With elections nearing, both sides will want to improve their images by passing a stimulus bill. Thus, with some compromise, they can agree on a final package, considering that the difference between the two sides is now less than $900 billion.

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Another option is that both sides could agree on several smaller proposals to provide interim relief. Presently, the two sides differ on several provisions, but they agree on some provisions, including coronavirus stimulus checks.

A similar suggestion to push through smaller packages has been made before, including by White House Chief of Staff Mark Meadows, but House Speaker Nancy Pelosi rejected it. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin gave a similar suggestion earlier this week.

“Let’s do a more targeted bill now,” Mnuchin said, referring to the GOP skinny bill. “If we need to do more in 30 days, we’ll continue to do more.”

Executive orders or no package at all

Another option is President Donald Trump signing more executive orders. Trump issued executive orders on a number of provisions, including unemployment benefits, after the talks collapsed last month. Thus, it is possible that in the event of no deal, Trump will issue more executive orders. The president has already suggested using unused pandemic relief funds to send coronavirus stimulus checks to Americans.

One less optimistic option is both sides failing to reach a deal on the stimulus package. With elections nearing, no side wants to give any leverage to the other side. On the other hand, sending coronavirus stimulus checks could prove a game changer in the elections. Thus, neither side will want the other side to take credit for it. Amid such political games, it is possible that the stalemate will continue, with each side blaming the other for blocking the relief package.

No one really wants this last scenario. Both sides agree on the need for another coronavirus stimulus package and more $1,200 stimulus checks. Moreover, the alarmingly high unemployment numbers and looming housing crisis lends support to the calls for another stimulus package.

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