Trump released the stimulus and government spending funds, even though it didn't include the $2000 payment he claimed he wanted. A shut down was avoided, but millions of Americans' unemployment benefits ran out last night. This will cause not only at least an entire week's loss in benefits, but innumerable inconvenience and devastating uncertainty.
According to The Washington Post:
The government would have shut down on Tuesday if Trump didn’t act. In addition to containing money to fund government operations, the spending package also includes emergency relief money that finances a new round of stimulus checks, unemployment aid, and small business assistance, among other things.
Congress overwhelmingly passed the bipartisan bill on Monday night and Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin praised it, something congressional leaders in both parties interpreted as a sign that Trump was supportive. But the president released a video on Tuesday demanding changes. He said, among other things, that the bill should have authorized stimulus checks of $2,000 per person instead of the $600 payments. Trump also wanted spending cuts to be included in the package, a concern he hadn’t raised until after Congress passed the bill.
If the bill isn’t signed into law by Tuesday, hundreds of thousands of federal employees would be sent home without pay. And even the many federal employees who continue to work because they are deemed “essential,” such as members of the military, will not be paid until a new funding bill is authorized.
In addition to a government shutdown on Tuesday, eviction protections for millions of Americans would lapse later this week; more than 14 million people are losing unemployment benefits; and no stimulus checks would be issued. Failing to sign the bill into law would also freeze new money for vaccine distribution, small business aid, the ailing airline industry, and school aid, among other things.
So, the guy who had no interest in the negotiations whatsoever, decided suddenly to undermine his Treasury Secretary, presumably to make Mitch McConnell sweat, by suddenly demanding families receive a stimulus check of $2000 instead of $600 - the amount in the bill negotiated by both sides and passed by both houses, allegedly with Trump's blessing and promise to sign.
States cannot pay out benefits for weeks that begin before the bill is signed. Since Trump delayed signing the bill, benefits will not restart until the first week of January. But the benefits will still end in mid-March, effectively trimming the extension to 10 weeks from 11.
— Kyle Griffin (@kylegriffin1) December 28, 2020
But don't worry. He still wants us to get $2000.
Trump signs bill, calls for spending recissions and says the Senate will "start the process for a vote that increases checks to $2,000, repeals Section 230, and starts an investigation into voter fraud."
Reminder that this Congress ends in six days
— Burgess Everett (@burgessev) December 28, 2020
Hahahaha - like he cares about getting Americans any relief whatsoever.
I will repeat it again. "It’s a rich boy’s privilege to see the poor & downtrodden as pawns in a political game rather than as individuals in desperate need. The idea that Donald Trump cares about the financial realities Americans face is ludicrous" https://t.co/XxSrZfOFwZ
— Helaine Olen (@helaineolen) December 28, 2020