If you are following the Senate coronavirus stimulus then you are aware of this snag that has been announced:
Here are the scenarios for how this SNAFU plays out.
- “Regulatory Guidance from the Department of Labor” – this is a backdoor way of Scott et al saying they would be okay with a handshake deal from the Admin. They could take care of this with a colloquy on the floor, a Tweet from Trump, or an official statement from the DOL. It is their way of saying they’d accept a gentleman’s agreement to a very specific legal complaint.
- “Fixing the bill” – It’s unclear at this time how drastic the changes these guys are describing are. If they are meaningful, it could sink the whole bill and amount to re-opening negotiations.
- Will Scott et al actually filibuster the bill? Scott et al could force a cloture vote on the bill, make the Senate vote to break their filibuster — but in order for them to delay the bill meaningfully, they’d have to actually stand on the Senate floor and deliver hours of remarks. Unclear whether or not any of these senators are hoping to be the face of further delaying aid to displaced workers and certainty to financial markets. 30 hours of debate is not required by a cloture vote. It is merely allowed for. Also unclear if other senators would join.
What I think Mitch McConnell is doing right now:
- Calling up Trump and asking for a DOL clarification and/or an air strike on Scott et al.
- Calming down Schumer who is threatening to pull his votes. He knows that if he is too accommodating to Scott et al he’ll lose his entire deal.
Do I think McConnell cares whether or not this passes today?
- I think he’d like it to.
- But I don’t think he cares if this pushes to tomorrow.
Take it as you will. Press conference coming soon.
Sen. Lindsey Graham suspicious of these provisions being an “error.” If you want a barometer of where the middle of the GOP Senate Conference is, listen to Lindsey Graham.
Will be interesting to see how Democrats respond.