Trump’s Stimulus Chaos Is Incredibly Stupid Politics

President Donald Trump.

As the Washington Post reports, the on-again off-again lifeline millions of Americans are holding on for is back on again, two days after President Donald Trump sent markets and stimulus negotiations into disarray by declaring no deal until “after I win.”

President Trump said Thursday that economic relief talks are back on and could include a new round of $1,200 stimulus checks, two days after he abruptly declared them over and ordered his deputies to stop negotiating with House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.).

“Well I shut down talks two days ago because they weren’t working out. Now they are starting to work out, we’re starting to have some very productive talks,” Trump said in an interview on Fox Business Network.

He said he believes Pelosi “wants it to happen, because it’s so good for our country, we really need it.”

Prior to Trump’s announcement Tuesday that stimulus negotiations would stop until after the elections, Republicans were hoping to obtain the upper hand in the back-and-forth over who was delaying a final agreement. Democratic insistence on key components in a final stimulus deal like aid to state and local governments was being portrayed by Republicans as unnecessary impediments to getting Americans another round of politically popular stimulus direct payments and expanded unemployment benefits. After Trump’s diagnosis with COVID-19, urgency from Republicans to get a deal renewed hopes for relief before the election–until Trump dashed them Tuesday by at least implicitly making another stimulus bill contingent on him winning re-election.

That didn’t go over well. With Trump’s numbers already dropping from the fallout of his irony-laden COVID diagnosis, Trump’s throwing of an expectation of imminent economic relief into doubt once again was a stupendous political error. The one thing we can say positively is that it does seem Trump’s subordinates quickly realized this was a major mistake, and prevailed on Trump to start walking it back fairly quickly. Given the pressing need for more economic stimulus that just about everyone agrees on, it is more likely now that a deal will be struck–but after forcing Americans to ride this emotional roller coaster through months of fruitless negotiations after Democrats passed a relief bill back in May, the political benefit for Republicans has greatly diminished.

Given how transparent Trump’s motives have become in these negotiations, it’s reasonable to suggest that if there isn’t a bill before the election and the election doesn’t go Trump’s way, there likely won’t be one after. With that in mind, and setting aside the politics, here’s hoping a deal can be struck in time to help Americans in October. Because we need it.

One Community Comment, Facebook Comments

  1. Meiner49er says:

    Trump's doing nothing for "us," and never will. He put stimulus on the table again because the market dropped 500 points when he took it off.

    That's the generous view. Worse is the possibility that he and his cronies took it off to provoke a slide, bought in, and then cashed in when the market rebounded. 

    This administration is political only to the extent that 19th century robber-barons were political. They can't win personally if they don't play publicly.


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