This morning, Trump tweeted again how measly $600 is and how he wants Americans to get $2,000. He's right; but is he being sincere or disingenuous? It's Donald J. Trump so I think we all know the answer to that. On Thursday, Pelosi called his bluff and staged a unanimous consent vote. Trump's handmaiden in the House, Kevin McCarthy, killed it by having one of his own lackeys, Virginia's Rob Wittman, offer a poison pill alternative. One 30-second phone call from the golf course from Trump to McCarthy and the unanimous consent would have been there. Instead... will Trump even sign the bill that did pass earlier in the week?
The way Pelosi's bill works, just replaces every $mention of "$600" with "$2,000" and every mention of "1,200" (for a couple) with $4,000. So Trump could sign it without undercutting his demand for $2,000, on which a straight up or down vote in the House takes place on Monday. Everyone's cards on the table. If it passes-- as is certain-- the Senate is likely to vote on Tuesday, where Moscow Mitch will make sure it fails-- exactly one week before this own fate is decided in the 2 Georgia runoffs. If Trump is pumping for $2,000 checks and McConnell kills them-- with votes against Trump by Perdue and Loeffler-- the Georgia Senate seats would be in much greater jeopardy.
Meanwhile, though, President Chaos has struck again. As Alan Rappeport reported for the NY Times this morning, expanded unemployment benefits-- that were set to continue into March-- ended today, as did revived, albeit niggardly ($300/week), supplemental unemployment benefits for 12 million workers. Even if Trump signs the bill today, "states will still need time to reprogram their computer systems to account for the new law, according to Michele Evermore of the National Employment Law Project, but unemployed workers would still be able to claim the benefits. Further delays could prove more costly. States cannot pay out benefits for weeks that begin before the bill is signed, meaning that if the president does not sign the bill by Saturday, benefits will not restart until the first week of January. But they will still end in mid-March, effectively trimming the extension to 10 weeks from 11." Then on Tuesday the government shuts down and the moratorium on evictions ends two days later. On top of that, the Paycheck Protection Program for small businesses is now in limbo.
Or will Trump just veto the bill, giving the American people-- and his own party-- one final sore-loser "fuck you" before departing office? He's golfing and his congressional allies and his own White House aides "have indicated that they remain uncertain if Mr. Trump will relent and sign the legislation, issue a formal veto or just leave it unsigned. While Congress could potentially override Mr. Trump’s veto, sitting on the bill — a so-called pocket veto — would require the next Congress to reintroduce and vote on the legislation early next year."