The next GOP stimulus bill is starting to come together. The White House and Senate GOP leaders may be closing in on their version of a $1 trillion coronavirus stimulus bill, though the number might creep up to $1.3 trillion. It looks like the bill will include scaled back federal unemployment benefits, some other direct payments to families, and incentives for business to hire or retain workers. The Washington Post reports that the plan would tie school funding to classrooms reopening, and may include some version of the payroll tax cut sought by President Trump. House Democrats already passed a $3 trillion bill that also includes additional funding for state and local governments, worker protections, and more food assistance.
SCOTUS to House Dems: Not so fast. The Supreme Court’s ruling that lower courts should decide whether the president must abide by congressional subpoenas will take effect on Aug. 3, though House lawyers asked the High Court to expedite it. They argued that three House committee investigations "are ongoing, remain urgent, and have been impeded by the lack of finality in these litigations, which were initiated in April 2019.” The House committees likely will narrow the scope of their subpoenas to improve their chances in the lower courts.
A tax tribute to John Lewis. Former IRS National Taxpayer Advocate Nina Olson wrote a nice tribute to the late congressman and civil rights icon, who was long-time member of the House Ways & Means Committee. Like many other who dealt with Lewis, Nina remembers his passion, compassion, and commitment to low-income households.
Who didn’t get their economic impact payments, and why? TPC’s Janet Holtzblatt and Michael Karpman, using data from the Urban Institute’s Coronavirus Tracking Survey, estimate that nearly 7 in 10 adults reported receiving the economic impact payments by late May. But there were significant disparities by income, race/ethnicity, and family citizenship status. Among those who may be eligible for the payment but did not receive the funds, 38 percent will need to apply on the IRS web portal or by filing an income tax return in 2021. Many do not have a bank account or access to the Internet—both barriers to receiving timely payments.
The Prescription’s next guest: Lisa Cook. Michigan State University economist Lisa Cook (@drlisadcook) will talk about the COVID-19 pandemic’s effects on growth and the economic implications of racial inequality with TPC’s Howard Gleckman (@howard_gleckman). Tune in on Thursday at Noon EDT. You can register here.
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- © Urban Institute, Brookings Institution, and individual authors, 2020.