The White House is signaling to Congress that President Trump will veto a new C-19 coronavirus aid bill if it does not include a payroll tax cut, adding a new complication to already contentious negotiations.
“President Trump wants to provide relief to hardworking Americans who have been impacted by this virus and one way of doing that is with a payroll tax holiday,” a White House spokesman said Thursday in a statement. “He has called on Congress to pass this before and he believes it must be part of any phase 4 package.”
President Trump considers a payroll tax freeze a Red-line issue in talks.
President Trump has regularly called for a payroll tax holiday, and has mused about making it permanent. The move would put some money in the pockets of Americans with jobs but also blow a hole in funding for the Medicare and Social Security programs.
The Republicans and Democrats are still far apart on how much and where to spend in the next virus aid/relief package.
Much of the last aid/relief/stimulus begins to run out in the next few weeks.
The Trump Administration insists on the payroll tax cut in conversations with congressional Republicans as they draft a bill for planned release next week.
Wednesday, the topic was brought up by Vice President Pence during conference call with rank and file House GOP members.
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) has not come out against the idea, but some Republicans have raised concerns about delays that could be caused in implementing it. Direct checks to individuals are seen as faster.
The total cost of a payroll tax reduction varies widely depending how deep the cut is and for how long it lasts.
If President Trump were to get the maximum cut, eliminating the full 15.3% payroll taxes funding Social Security and Medicare that is split between employees and employers, that would cost roughly $100-B a month, according to estimates.
Have a healthy weekend, Keep the Faith!