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Senate Republicans unveil a scaled-down stimulus plan that skips direct payments



  • Senate Republicans launched a scaled-down stimulus plan on Tuesday.
  • It includes $ 300 weekly unemployment benefits through December, $ 257 billion for small businesses, and no additional support for states in need.
  • Missing out on a second round of $ 1,200 worth of stimulus checks that helped people make ends meet at the height of lockdown orders in April and May.
  • Democrats are likely to block the bill that attacked them as “emaciated”.
  • You can find more stories on the Business Insider homepage.

Senate Republicans on Tuesday unveiled a scaled-down stimulus plan to add a $ 300 surcharge to state unemployment benefits. But it lacks a second round of $ 1

,200 direct payments, which helped people make ends meet at the height of the lockdowns earlier this year.

Democrats are likely to block the bill that does not include additional federal aid to states. It is priced at $ 500 billion. That’s half the original $ 1 trillion plan that the GOP launched in late July.

Given the low chance of passage, the legislation appears largely to be news aimed at conveying the GOP’s top priorities for the next coronavirus bailout and putting Democrats on the defensive.

The bill would provide an unemployment payout of $ 300 by December 27 and provide corporate liability protection through the Safe to Work Act. This move raises the bar for hospitals, schools, and small and large businesses when it comes to coronavirus-related lawsuits.

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There wasn’t a second round of direct payments backed by some Republicans – including President Donald Trump – and Democrats. Experts say the money supported the finances of millions of unemployed when the pandemic closed the US in March.

The plan would also extend the deadline until September 2021, when states can use $ 150 billion in federal aid granted in March under the Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security Act without adding flexibility or new funding to provide. Many states have already given their money to support their public health responses.

Democrats Say GOP Coronavirus Relief Plan is “Going Nowhere”

Republicans and Democrats are still far apart on action to join another round of pandemic relief. Democrats are calling for nearly $ 1 trillion in aid to cash-strapped states alone, a figure Republicans disapprove of as being too costly and unnecessary.

Both sides agree that the federal government should supplement the state unemployment benefit, but disagree on the amount to be approved. Democrats want to restore the $ 600 weekly aid that was in place from March through July, but the GOP plan would revive them at $ 300 a week – half that much.

Trump signed an ordinance last month to provide $ 300 weekly unemployment benefits through the end of the year. Most states are slow to distribute it because they are outdated benefit systems.

Top Congress Democrats attacked the plan on Tuesday before it was officially revealed. In a statement, Chuck Schumer, chairman of the Senate minority, and Nancy Pelosi, spokeswoman for the House of Representatives, said: “The Senate Republicans appear to be stuck on another bill that doesn’t get close to the problems and goes nowhere.”

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They added, “This emaciated bill is only intended to help vulnerable Republican senators by giving them a ‘check the box’ vote to create the impression that they are not being held hostage by their non-spending far right wing wants nickel to help people. “

Negotiations between the White House and the Democrats fell apart last month due to heated disagreement over the amount of federal spending needed to keep the economy alive. Democrats are pushing for more spending of at least $ 2.2 trillion.

Friday’s latest employment report showed the US regained 1.4 million jobs in August, suggesting that the economy has been slowly recovering after a wave of massive job losses caused by the pandemic earlier this year.

But nearly 29 million Americans still have unemployment benefits, and experts have warned of a rebound that leaves many low-income people who have lost jobs and incomes at a higher rate compared to more affluent people.


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