by Christian Datoc and Henry Rodgers
Hopes are low that Congress will put a Phase 4 stimulus package on President Donald Trump’s desk before the upcoming August recess, people familiar with the negotiations tell the Daily Caller.
Two senior White House officials and several Hill officials with intimate knowledge of the negotiations fear that Republicans and Democrats are too far apart on wish-list items to realistically move the bill forward. The sources, who spoke on condition of anonymity in order to discuss the ongoing talks, cast a stark sentiment on both sides of the negotiation table.
The White House and members of Congress have floated potential items for a Phase 4 coronavirus stimulus package for months — including a payroll tax cut, a second tranche of direct payments to taxpayers and increased budgeting for schools to reopen in the fall — but formal negotiations between the administration and Congressional leadership didn’t kick off until this week. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell and House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy met with Trump at the White House on Monday.