There’s a holiday drama set in Washington, D.C., but this is not some sappy Hallmark Christmas movie. No, this is a political grudge match that involves almost every American hoping for some economic relief from the pandemic.
On Thursday, House Republicans shot down the Democrats’ attempt to pass President Trump’s last-minute demand of $2,000 direct payments to most Americans, instead of the $600 stimulus checks that he referred to as a “disgrace.”
If Trump vetos the current COVID-19 relief bill, there’s a good chance the government would experience a partial shutdown for a brief time beginning on Dec. 29. It would obviously also put a kibosh on the $600 payments that reporters earlier in the week said would start to be distributed the final week of December.
While President Trump has found himself in rare alignment with people like House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, who also agrees the payments for Americans should be higher, Senate Republicans, led by Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell have opposed the $2,000 payment, saying they simply are too costly.
The next step, according to Pelosi, is a recorded vote on the $2,000 payments she said she will force lawmakers in the House to take, which will force Republican members to go on record on whether or not they are in favor of Trump’s opinion that the payments for Americans need to be higher.
Definitely not a Hallmark Christmas movie with this plot line. More like an episode of “House of Cards” instead.