Schumer Goals to Cross Contemporary COVID-19 Reduction Plan by Mid-March

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Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer said he plans to complete the next round of COVID-19 aid by mid-March, when unemployment benefits from the final package run low.

“We’ll try to get this done in the next month and a half,” Schumer said in relation to pandemic relief on Jan. 25 on a phone call with supporters of New York City transportation.

A bipartisan group of senators, along with the Republican and Democratic leaders of a moderate group of House representatives, polled the White House on Jan. 24 about President Joe Biden’s $ 1.9 trillion stimulus proposal.

Brian Deese, head of Biden’s National Economic Council, was pushed to justify the price of the plan, which would be the second largest emergency spending package ever. Maine GOP Senator Susan Collins said she would suggest that the bipartisan group put together its own, more targeted proposal.

Shares pulled back on news of Schumer’s schedule after Biden last week underscored the need to act quickly amid the ongoing onslaught of the pandemic. The S&P 500 fell 0.5% as of 11:34 a.m. in New York after hitting a record high on Jan. 21.

House spokeswoman Nancy Pelosi told donors on a phone call last week that she had originally planned to pass on the Biden incentive with quick budget procedures in the first two weeks of Congress, but that plans were in the air.

The Schumer timeline reflects the length it might take to compile an invoice using the expedited budget reconciliation required to bypass a minority Republican filibuster. The House of Representatives and the Senate would first have to work out a budget resolution for the 2021 financial year. This Senate process involves a sub-vote that allows hundreds of budget amendments to be offered for simple majority votes. The solution can take days.

Once a simultaneous budget resolution with reconciliation instructions is adopted, the committees would have to work out legislation that complies with the draft. That legislation would then have to be passed by both the House and the Senate, assessed by the Congressional Budget Office, and survive any regulatory challenge in the Senate. The second process would likely take weeks.

Another complication: The Senate has now agreed to begin the impeachment proceedings against former President Donald Trump on February 9. It is unclear how long this process could take.

At the conference call between the White House and bipartisan lawmakers on Jan. 24, it was discussed to quickly pass a funding bill for the coronavirus vaccine, medical leave and increase in the minimum wage.

In addition to the delays, Senate Minority Chairmen Schumer and Mitch McConnell have yet to agree on organizing the 50:50 Senate, which is holding back the ability of the committees to get their work done on the legislation. McConnell has called on the Democrats’ pledge not to remove the 60-vote filibuster end requirement for most laws as part of the deal, which Schumer has called unacceptable.

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