Senate Passes Latest Fiscal Stimulus Bill With Voice Vote, Small Businesses & Hospitals This Round’s Beneficiaries

Here’s more on the latest fiscal stimulus, including who won’t be getting the free money in this particular round of spending…

UPDATE: The Senate has passed the bill.

From Fox News:

The Senate on Tuesday passed a nearly $500 billion coronavirus “Phase 3.5” relief bill that would replenish a small business rescue program known as the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP), provide hospitals with another $75 billion and implement a nationwide virus testing program to facilitate reopening the economy.

The measure passed by voice vote, which simply requires each side to holler “yay” or “nay,” with the louder side winning. Ahead of the bill’s passage, some Republicans voiced their frustrations that there was not a full roll call vote, even as some senators remained at home amid the pandemic. “This is not acceptable,” Sen. Mike Lee, R-Utah, said on the Senate floor. “We should not be passing legislation … without Congress actually being in session.”

And, Sen. Rand Paul, R-Ky., declared that Congress should stop “printing bailout cash” because the U.S. “can manage this disease without the draconian lockdown of the economy.” Announcing his opposition to the stimulus in no uncertain terms, he told colleagues: “We can’t continue on this course.”

At the same time, Paul noted that he “has not invoked the Senate rules to require a vote” by roll call — and was present only so that history would record that not every senator favored spending $484 billion.

Rep. Steny Hoyer, the House majority leader, said on a conference call with reporters that House votes would take place Thursday. He said the House will also vote on a proposal to allow proxy voting during the pandemic, a first for Congress, which has required in-person business essentially since its founding.

The bill now goes back to the House for a final vote, and if it passes there, it will be signed into law by President Trump.

Of course, now that we’re up to Fiscal Stimulus Bill “3.5”, and since it’s all like “yeah, whatever” in Congress, there will likely be no problems with the House passing this bill.

And then?

On to Phase 4.0.

For those keeping the score.

END OF UPDATE

*****

(Silver Doctors Editors) The next round of fiscal stimulus could be a done deal today.

From Bloomberg:

The White House and Congress have agreed on a new pandemic relief plan providing funds for a tapped-out small business aid program and aid for coronavirus testing and overwhelmed hospitals.

Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer and House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy confirmed the agreement, as did a Trump administration official. The Senate plans to be in session Tuesday afternoon, when the package is likely to be approved.

“We do have a deal, and I believe we will pass it this afternoon at 4 p.m.,” Schumer said on CNN. “They are still dotting the i’s and crossing the t’s, but every major issue was resolved.”

CLICK HERE FOR REST OF STORY ON BLOOMBERG.

Here’s more on the bill, from CNN:

What won’t be in the bill, he acknowledged, is more money for states and localities, which Democrats pushed hard for.
“But we did get a commitment from the White House that they would be able to use those funds for lost revenues,” Schumer told CNN.
Schumer said Democrats will fight for more state and localities funding in a separate relief package in the future.
The Trump administration and lawmakers have been under pressure to replenish the Paycheck Protection Program after it ran out of funds last week. The SBA said it had approved over 1.66 million loans for more than $342 billion.
But a main gripe with the program has been that banks prioritized their existing customers and large restaurants, which received millions in loans from the PPP, leaving many small businesses without access to the funds intended to keep their operations afloat.

We will update this post as necessary.

Developing…