Legislative Update: Timeline of Recent COVID-19 Relief Legislation Activity

October 12, 2020 – The following is a timeline summary of recent events toward possible COVID-19 relief legislation.

October 1, 2020: House Democrats passed a revised version of the HEROES Act with a $2.2 trillion price tag. This version of the bill will not be taken up by the Senate.

October 6, 2020: In a tweet at 11:48 am, President Trump said, “I am rejecting their request, and looking to the future of our Country, I have instructed my representatives to stop negotiating until after the election…” The announcement seemed to have taken many by complete surprise.

October 6, 2020: In another tweet later that same say, the President reversed himself and called on Congress to immediately pass relief for the airline industry and an extension of the Payroll Protection Program.

October 8, 2020: Speaker Pelosi says that that there will be no stand-alone legislation to help the airlines without a comprehensive package.

October 9, 2020: According to the Wall Street Journal, the White House is proposing a $1.8 trillion dollar stimulus bill which is larger than any previous Republican proposal.

October 9, 2020: Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell said the passage of an economic stimulus package was improbable before the election.

October 9, 2020: Appearing on the Rush Limbaugh radio program, President Trump says, “I would like to see a bigger stimulus package, frankly, than either the Dems or the Rs are offering. I’m going in the exact opposite now. OK?” The President also tweeted, “Covid Relief Negotiations are moving along. Go Big!”

October 10, 2020: Wall Street Journal says: “Both Senate Republicans and House Democrats signaled opposition to the Trump administration’s $1.8 trillion offer for coronavirus relief aid.” Speaker Pelosi’s opposition was reiterated by Politico.

October 11, 2020: White House negotiators Mark Meadows and Secretary Mnuchin sent a letter to Congress urging the passage of piecemeal legislation in lieu of a more comprehensive package.

October 12, 2020: Congress is focused on the confirmation hearings for a Supreme Court Justice.

October 13, 2020: President Trump tweets, “STIMULUS! Go big or go home!!!” And the Washington Post reports that Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell has announced that the Senate will vote on a new “targeted” relief package next week. Details about what will be in that package are not yet available.

October 14, 2020: Secretary Mnuchim speaking at the Milken Institute Global Conference said today, “I’d say at this point getting something done before the election and executing on that would be difficult.” The entire discussion can be found here.

To learn more about the Employee Retention Credit, click here.

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