The newspapers bring a new chapter every day in the ongoing saga of the Democrats’ failure to negotiate federal stimulus payments for the unemployed.
Today, the news is that Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell is going to submit a $500 billion Republican stimulus bill for Senate approval. Months ago, the House approved a $3.5 trillion stimulus bill, which McConnell allowed to sit on his desk for two months before negotiations on a compromise even began.
The Democrats, who touted Nancy Pelosi’s negotiating prowess, have been completely outnegotiated by the Republican tag-team of Mark Meadows, Steve Mnuchin, and McConnell himself.
The unemployed and the states, which need stimulus money to avoid laying off teachers, firemen, police, and first responders, have been left high and dry.
The Democrats have two levers of power: First, they can demand something from the Republicans in exchange for their approval of an increase in the debt limit. Without their approval, the government would shut down on October 1.
Pelosi has already foresworn use of that power lever, having agreed to pass a “clean” continuing resolution.
Second, Biden could make a big issue of the Republicans’ failure to support the unemployed or the states in his campaign. He hasn’t. He hasstated that he will not raise taxes on those earning less than $400,000 a year.
The Republicans play hardball, while the Democrats whiff at the plate.
The Trenchant Observer