(PresidentialWire.com)- While House Democrats are seeking another large economic stimulus package and Senate Republicans are seeking a smaller one, it seems the White House is aiming to land right in between.
Over the weekend, Peter Navarro, the White House’s trade adviser, said the Trump administration would be targeting the next coronavirus stimulus package toward manufacturing in the country.
House Democrats have already passed a wide-sweeping stimulus package that totals $3 trillion. Republicans have responded that they would like a much smaller fourth stimulus bill that would be narrower in focus.
Navarro said President Donald Trump is hoping for a package of “at least $2 trillion that is strategically focused around the president’s two simple rules — Buy American, Hire American — along with incentives for American companies to bring off-shored jobs back home.”
“We are facing significant structural headwinds,” as a result of service industries such as transportation, hospitality and entertainment being hit very hard by the COVID-19 outbreak. “The only way to fully rebuild the economy in the face of those headwinds is to significantly expand and strengthen our manufacturing base.
“Put simply, we need to create more manufacturing jobs. Manufacturing jobs not only provide good wages but also create more jobs both up- and downstream through multiplier effects.”
In addition to disagreeing about the scope of the next stimulus bill, House Democrats and Senate Republicans have disagreed on the necessary timing. Democrats believe another package is needed right away, while Republicans have pushed a more patient approach so they can assess the full effects of the CARES Act.
Navarro, meanwhile, said it would be necessary to pass the next stimulus package before August’s recess “for the sake of American workers and small businesses now in pain. But it’s hard to pass bills when Capitol Hill is a ghost town.”
As of now, the White House and Republicans in Congress haven’t met eye-to-eye on the inner workings of the next stimulus package. They are both in agreement, though, that data needs to be monitored regarding the economic impact of COVID-19. Kevin Hassett, a White House economic adviser, said officials would be constantly monitoring the data and expects plans for the next package to be shared near the end of July.
Hassett did put the odds of another stimulus package “very, very high,” but what it will actually include will depend on what the economic data, such as the unemployment rate, shows over the next few weeks.
Officials within the Trump administration said a group of experts is currently working on preparing different options for the fourth stimulus package. Trump met with his economic team last week, in fact, to discuss the bill.
As Kellyanne Conway, the White House counselor, said last week:
“I can’t say exactly what he’s (Trump) going to support. He’s been very clear about looking at a phase four, possibly infrastructure, more relief for distressed industries and individuals, growing the economy.”
Between now and the end of next month, there will likely be lots of talk about how big the next stimulus package should be, and what programs would help the American people most.