Leader McConnell Kills $2,000 Checks

Majority leader Mitch McConnell wrapped the President’s proposed $2,000 stimulus checks with two hot-button issues, in what appears to be a poison pill of a proposal. Shortly before adjourning the Senate on Tuesday afternoon, the Leader introduced a bill that would combine the (House-approved) increased direct payments with 1. the repeal of online liability protections known as section 230, and 2. the establishment of a commission to study voter fraud. The latter two issues have been touted by POTUS for weeks, but now lack universal support among Senate Republicans and have little support among House Democrats.

McConnell stated the he would not be “bullied” into action despite pressure from President Trump, House Democrats and even some Senate Republicans. Tuesday, the House passed a stimulus bill that would have raised the $600 payments to $2,000.

“The Senate is not going to be bullied into rushing out more borrowed money into the hands of Democrats’ rich friends who don’t need the help,” McConnell said on the Senate floor.

Senate Majority Leader, Mitch McConnell

On Sunday, POTUS signed into law a $900 billion economic relief package that would send $600 stimulus checks to more than 100 million Americans. On Wednesday, Senate Democrats urged McConnell to bring the House bill to the Senate floor for a vote, arguing that a weakening economy and raging pandemic are creating enormous hardship for millions of Americans. “At the very least, the Senate deserves the opportunity for an up-or-down vote,” said Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY), as he took the floor to blast McConnell in a speech.

Stocks held levels just fractionally below the all-time highs set Monday and Tuesday. With one day to trade, the S&P 500 is poised to log a 15% gain for 2020, the Russell 2000 a 19% gain, and the NASDAQ Composite a 43% gain. The yield of the 10-Year Treasury fell from 1.92% to 0.93% in 2020.