Things are looking bleak for the next stimulus checks as there is no agreement yet even as we reach the end of August. Moreover, recent comments from lawmakers cast a gloomy outlook over the prospects of coronavirus stimulus checks in the near future as well.
On Sunday, White House Chief of Staff Mark Meadows offered discouraging comments on the prospects of coronavirus stimulus checks, as well as blamed Democrats for the stalemate. Speaking on NBC’s Meet The Press, Meadows said that House Speaker Nancy Pelosi is unwilling to budge on her demand for the $2.2 trillion stimulus package.
“Here’s the problem is – she puts forth a number, suggests that she came down, and yet she’s willing to turn down $1.3 trillion of help that goes to the American people because she would rather them have nothing than to give way on what her fantasy objection might be,” he said.
Democrats were originally asking for a relief package costing about $3 trillion. After the negotiations started, Pelosi offered a compromise at $2.2 trillion. Republicans, however, rejected Pelosi’s offer.
The $1.3 trillion figure that Meadows is referring to is the latest offer from the White House for the stimulus package. A few days back, Meadows said that the President is willing to sign a $1.3 trillion package. Pelosi, however, rejected the proposal, saying it won’t meet the needs of Americans.
Meadows raised questions on Pelosi’s $2.2 trillion counter offer, saying she can’t “tell the American people, nor me, what is in that.”
Further, Meadows said that he can, however, tell what’s in the $1.3 trillion offer that he offered to Pelosi. According to Meadows, the offer includes enhanced unemployment benefits, support for small businesses, funds for daycare and hospitals, and help for schools.
Meadows noted funds for all these provisions are at levels that Pelosi would agree with. “I can tell you all of those things that I just mentioned are available for the American people and the speaker, Pelosi, is saying no,” he said.
Will there be more negotiations?
When the anchor asked if the White House will raise its offer to beyond $1.3 trillion, Meadows suggested that they would no longer negotiate with the Democrats over the desired numbers.
“Well, listen, we're not going to negotiate here because the speaker's been very clear,” Meadows said, referring to Pelosi’s demand for a $2.2 trillion package. Meadows said Pelosi isn’t doing a “proper negotiation,” adding that “many of her rank and file members don't even accept it.”
After the talks collapsed earlier this month, we have seen the White House taking the lead to reach an agreement. Now with Meadows suggesting they won’t negotiate with Democrats, the prospects of the next coronavirus stimulus checks becomes even more uncertain.