The US Congress is working to pass a fifth coronavirus aid package before the end of this month. However, the republicans and democrats of the house have divided over some parts of the bill which is making its pass non-eminent. Back in May, the same Democratic-controlled house of representatives voted in to pass a $3.4 trillion COVID-19 relief bill.
While the house is pushing for another aid package, the republican controlled senate is expected to unveil a package of about $1T, later this week according to republican senator Mitch McConnell who confirmed it on Tuesday.
With the virus now pushing the US economy to walls, the package is more needed than it should delay. Across the country, over 4,072,061 cases, and 145,615 deaths have been reported to date. This puts the US in most cases globally.
The US president, Mr. Donald Trump has weighed in on what the package should entail and sometimes differed from what both parties are recommending.
As legislators are set to begin discussing the bill, sometimes amid their ranks, the republicans and democrats have found common grounds and also some things which will cause disagreements.
At its early stages, the common ground includes direct payments to Americans. Back, in March, Congress authorized direct payment of up to $2400 per family. The latest bill will authorize another round of payments of up to $ 6,000 per household, which has supported by the Democrats. Republicans have also supported the same, though they have been vague on the exact amount.
Aid to schools is also another common ground. Both parties of the house have supported roughly $100bn that should be given to schools and universities. Though many schools have now to implement distance learning at the end of the school year and the president has directed them to resume in-person learning when classes resume.
Besides, both parties appear to be in support of increased spending on health where more money should now be directed to testing and other measures to contain COVID-19. Likewise, both parties are supporting the paycheck protection program, which is to offer grants and loans to the small business that been hit-hard by this world pandemic.
However, the two sides of the house have also disagreed on several things that entail the bill. They have disagreed on liability protections. While the republicans support shielding of businesses and other organizations from personal injury lawsuits related to the virus, the democrats are on the other side.
They are also on the same page regarding the payroll tax cut. While Trump administration has been pushing for a cut of up to 7.65 percent payroll tax, which has been funding social security and Medicare, senators from both parties have shown little interest.
There are some proposals which the republicans are reluctant to support. These include the proposals by the democrats to include funding for the US postal service, food assistance, student loan relief, transit system, and the November election.
While there exist some differences and some common grounds, what is important is for the bill to go through, sooner than later to help those who have been deprived by the current hard times.
Lena Wood graduated from John Carroll University in the year 2002. She born and grown up in Dallas but later she moved to Cleveland for Studying. Lena has written for several major publications including Community Newspapers and News Desk. Lena is a community Reporter and also Covers National Topics.