Important to remember: At the same time that the government in America is trying to hash out a COVID relief bill, the same government is also trying to hash out a government spending bill. Failure to do one results in millions on the brink of final collapse, whilst, failure to do both likely will result in significant problems for the United States ahead. Without a bill, the government is set to shutdown on Saturday.
According to the latest reports, efforts for what was thought to be a bipartisan COVID-relief bill appear to have now faltered. The efforts appear to have been quashed by McConnell because he is still reportedly demanding some form of liability protections for businesses if Democrats want their monies sent to states and local jurisdictions. While it may seem a bit hair brained it is among the more bizarre reasons why the bill is being held up.
*The government will shut down tomorrow without a bill.
Democrats are refusing to give into the liability protections simply because that would mean pro-Trump far-right science-denying business owners could avert legal trouble by not acknowledging the Coronavirus. McConnell is insistent on this feat in the package but it appears as they say Dead on Arrival.
Meanwhile on the other front, Friday is another important day for the government. By Friday, negotiators must come up with a must-pass government spending bill or else. By Saturday if they’ve failed, the government will shut down in the midst of essentially at this point a natural disaster. A shutdown would further complicate the government’s efforts to fight the Coronavirus and the rising death toll they tried so hard to avoid.
On another front, Trump and the GOP want to suspend unemployment benefits all together from this point on. In exchange, they want to give Americans a one-off $600 stimulus check and call it a day. This has not sat well with almost everyone including more common-sense Republicans.
We’ll be following these developments all weekend as they continue to unfold.
UPDATE: Shortly after 4pm EST on Friday — a temporary stopgap spending bill was passed. This means that the government has until next week to do the same that they were supposed to do this week. A COVID relief bill still has not been fully negotiated.