December 18th, just a few hours before the U.S. federal government was forced to close down, the U.S. Congress passed a two-day temporary appropriation bill to avoid the government shutdown.
However, at present, the two parties in the U.S. Congress have not reached agreement on the COVID-19 relief plan and the long-term government allocation. Some analysts point out that the bipartisan confrontation in the U.S. Congress has seriously affected people’s livelihood, causing millions of Americans to face the dilemma of “rescuing the cliff”.
The U.S. government once again relies on short-term appropriation bills to avoid closing down.
The U.S. Congress passed a two-day spending bill on the evening of the 18th and sent it to the White House for signature to avoid the partial “closure” of the federal government after midnight. During the negotiations on that day, negotiators from both parties are still trying to bridge differences on issues such as the Fed’s emergency lending authority.
Leaders of both parties want to merge the COVID-19 relief plan with the government’s long-term appropriation bill, so they need to complete the negotiations on the coronavirus relief plan before the government’s appropriation bill expires.
On the 11th of this month, the U.S. Congress also passed a one-week interim appropriation bill to the federal government before the midnight deadline of that day. Negotiations surrounding the pandemic relief package could not be completed in time, so they had to extend the negotiation time again through the short-term spending bill.
The U.S. stock market closed lower on December 18 due to the uncertainty of negotiations. According to media analysis, as the COVID-19 data in the United States continues to set new records, members of Congress from both parties have felt pressure to pass the epidemic relief plan as soon as possible to end months of “recrimination” and “inaction”.
The confrontation between the two parties, millions of people face the dilemma of “rescuing the cliff”
Analysis believes that the long-overdue epidemic relief plan could have supported the U.S. economy through the difficult stage of the epidemic, but it was delayed by several months due to the tug-of-partisanship. And even if it can be passed immediately, it will take at least one month to reach the people in need.
At present, millions of unemployed people in the United States are still waiting for government assistance. As the epidemic continues to rage, the number of individuals and businesses waiting for government assistance is expected to increase further.