After the economic effects of coronavirus felt around the country, many Americans are wondering whether there will be a second stimulus package.
Last week, President Donald Trump hinted at the possibility of a “dramatic” Phase 4 stimulus payment this summer.
“I think we’re working on something that’s going to be very dramatic, very good,” Trump told Nexstar on Wednesday. “I think we are looking at a Phase 4. Phase 1, 2 and 3 have been fantastic for people, generally…small business owners, also. But we’re looking at doing something else in addition.”
During the interview, Trump also discussed whether he was concerned about a second wave of COVID-19.
“No, I’m not because we know how to put it out,” Trump said. “We may have flames and we may have embers, but I was talking to Mike Pence the other day and he was saying that out of over 3,000 counties, there is just a very tiny proportion of them that have any kind of a little bit of an outbreak. And what we’ve done is we’ve closed that down and we take care of it. But no, I’m not concerned about it at all.”
Last month, Trump hinted at a $4,000 domestic travel tax credit called “Explore America” during a roundtable discussion with restaurant executives. The credit is currently just a proposal and needs to be finalized before Congress can approve.
The necessity for a second COVID-19 relief package has been questioned by officials after an unexpectedly positive jobs report for the month of May.
Stephen Moore, an economic adviser to the White House, has said in interviews that a new relief bill is unnecessary in light of the uptick in jobs from the report.
“It takes a lot of the wind out of the sails of any phase 4”, Moore said. “We don’t need it now. There’s no reason to have a major spending bill. The sense of urgent crisis is very greatly dissipated by the report.”
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell echoed the sentiments in a statement released after the May jobs report.
“As Senate Republicans have made clear for weeks, future efforts must be laser-focused on helping schools reopen safely in the fall, helping American workers continue to get back on the job, and helping employers reopen and grow,” the Senate majority leader said.
In May, House Democrats narrowly passed the HEROES Act, an extensive 1,800-page bill that would offer a second round of checks to the tune of $1,200 per person and up to $6,000 per family.
McConnell has voiced strong opposition to the HEROES Act. Republicans hold a majority in the Senate and have been put off by the size of the bill.
Last month, President Trump also expressed he would veto the bill if it would pass, adding that funding is "going to happen in a much better way.”