Negotiations between top Democrats and the Trump administration have stalled, with both parties walking away from the table without having settled on a second coronavirus stimulus package. Trump admin officials reportedly rejected an offer by the Democrats for the bill to have a $2 trillion price tag. This significantly impacts the chances of Americans getting a second stimulus check anytime soon.
According to CNN, White House negotiators Mark Meadows and Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin have said that they are recommending to President Trump that he sign an executive order on extending unemployment benefits and a moratorium on evictions. "(We) will recommend to the President based upon our lack of activity today to move forward with some executive orders," Mnuchin told reporters on Friday. "We're going to take executive orders to try to alleviate some of the pain that people are experiencing," said Meadows, Trump's chief of staff. "This is not a perfect answer. We'll be the first ones to say that, but it is all that we can do and all the President can do within the confines of his executive power and we're going to encourage him to do it."
#BREAKING: Sec. Steven Mnuchin, Mark Meadows will recommend President Trump to move ahead with executive orders on rent, student loans, unemployment: "We agree with the Speaker this is not the first choice but people have run out of the enhanced unemployment." pic.twitter.com/VY9zqG54Rx— The Hill (@thehill) August 7, 2020
Meadows and Mnuchin have been meeting with Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, the nation's two top Democrat leaders, for much of the week. In a previous statement, Schumer expressed hope that they would be able to reach and agreement, saying, "We're making progress," Schumer previously said. "We really went down issue by issue by issue, slogging through them. They made some concessions, which we appreciated. We made some concessions, which they appreciated. We’re still far away on a lot of the important issues, but we’re continuing to go at it."
In a statement on Friday, Pelosi said, "When you're having an opportunity like this to do something for the American people, it's an opportunity, but we can't have it be a missed opportunity to do that by settling for something so low, so beneath meeting the needs of the American people." Schumer added, "The House doesn't have the votes to go south of $2 trillion, the Senate Democrats can't go south of 2 trillion, so that's what compromise is all about. Because there are 20 Republicans who don't want to vote anything that doesn't mean the whole thing should shift in their direction. You have to meet in the middle."