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Chances of another stimulus check coming in 2020 get slimmer every day

Published Nov 17th, 2020 7:34PM EST
Image: Rod Lamkey - CNP/MEGA
  • Democrats and Republicans both say that there needs to be another stimulus package before the end of the year, but they are as far apart as ever on a deal.
  • Democrats say that Republicans won’t work with them, while Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell calls the latest stimulus bill from the Democrats “unserious.”
  • Several major components of the original CARES Act expire at the end of the year, and unless Congress passes a new bill, many Americans will suffer in the near future.

The presidential election is over (despite a mountain of pending legal challenges), but it doesn’t seem like Congress is any closer to passing another major stimulus package. Ahead of the election, the White House and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi were working with each other every day to reach a deal on a bill that might stand a chance of passing in the Senate. We never got to see what Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell would have done with a package that had the president’s stamp of approval, though, because an agreement was never made.

Two full weeks after the election, the federal government has been all but silent on the prospects of a stimulus bill, but the fire hasn’t gone out quite yet, as Congressional leaders are still floating the idea of another package being passed in 2020. The question now is how likely they are to actually make something happen.

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The answer? Not likely, if we are going by McConnell’s latest series of dismissive tweets. The Majority Leader voiced his displeasure with the HEROES Act from House Democrats once again on Tuesday:

House Democrats passed a $3.4 trillion stimulus package in May, but the Senate never even brought it up for a vote. In the months that followed, Pelosi reduced the price of the bill to $2.2 trillion, and the White House countered with a bill that would have been priced at $1.9 trillion. There was hope that the two sides could work out their differences in order to get financial aid out to the millions of Americans who are still suffering as a result of the pandemic, but talks fell apart in the weeks before the election. Of course, even if Pelosi and Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin found common ground, Senate Republicans indicated that any bill in the trillion-dollar range would be shot down.

Meanwhile, McConnell and those same Republicans have been attempting to pass a $500 billion bill that would have focused heavily on assisting small businesses, but failed to include any direct relief for families or significant funds for a national testing and tracing program that could help bring this record-breaking spike to an end.

Publicly, Democrats and Republicans in positions of power alike are saying that more stimulus is needed, especially with some of the more important elements of the CARES Act expiring at the end of the year. But that talk has yet to lead to any action, and the government is running out of time to avoid another economic crisis.

Jacob Siegal
Jacob Siegal Associate Editor

Jacob Siegal is Associate Editor at BGR, having joined the news team in 2013. He has over a decade of professional writing and editing experience, and helps to lead our technology and entertainment product launch and movie release coverage.