The battle royal to replace Justice Ruth Ginsberg is likely to create a political firestorm. Any hope of passing a new stimulus bill is quickly fading. Then there’s also the risk of the U.S. Government shutting down in just nine days. Republicans in the Senate and Democrats in the House are at war.
With the total number of those infected with the coronavirus tops 7 million and fatalities toping 200,000 and almost 30 million unemployed, the death of Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg couldn’t have come at a worse time. Her passing changes the priorities of Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) to drop everything and rush the Supreme Court nominee to be named this Friday or Saturday by President Donald J. Trump.
The rush to replace Justice Ginsburg is likely to kill any chance of pushing through the Senate any bipartisan stimulus bill before the end of this year. This will mean no stimulus checks, no money for state and local governments to address their financial shortfalls due to the Covid-19 pandemic.
The danger of the economic fallout becoming much worse because of state and government layoffs, a new wave of the coronavirus as we enter flu season, and even a government shutdown could now threaten the country’s financial system.
House Democrats unveiled a short-term spending bill today that Senate Republicans immediately said they would oppose. That raises the chance that a government shutdown could occur on October 1, 2020, just over weeks before the November elections.
The danger of the House and Senate being unable to pass new spending legislation before midnight September 30, 2020, could shutdown key government agencies, including the Pentagon and Health and Human Services department. Given the acrimony of President Trump and Mitch McConnell’s insistence of breaking precedent and rushing to replace Justice Ginsburg, the danger of an impasse is growing. According to the Washington Post…
“The House Democrats’ legislation would keep the government funded through December 11. But it omits $30 billion sought by President Trump and Senate Republicans to replenish a bailout program for farmers that Democrats oppose.”
The Trump administration shifted tens of billions of dollars in emergency aid to farmers, first because of the impact of the White House’s trade war with China and Europe and, most recently, for use during the coronavirus pandemic to help ease the economic fallout of health emergency.
Democrats are calling on the Republican-controlled Senate to accept their proposed short term spending bill….
“The Continuing Resolution introduced today will avert a catastrophic shutdown in the middle of the ongoing pandemic, wildfires and hurricanes, and keep the government open until December 11, when we plan to have bipartisan legislation to fund the government for this fiscal year,” House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) said in a statement.
A tentative agreement between Speaker Pelosi and Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin aimed at reaching a compromise over the farm bailout. Food assistance monies for schoolkids affected by the pandemic unexpectedly broke down late Friday, according to the Washington Post. Republicans are accusing Pelosi of backing out of a deal with Mnuchin, while Democrats insisted there wasn’t a deal, to begin with.