Democrats and Republicans on Capitol Hill try to find common ground on a new coronavirus relief package, new legal filings indicate why Manhattan’s district attorney wants the president’s tax returns, and Illinois Speaker of the House Mike Madigan could lose a very wealthy and influential political donor.
All things up for discussion this morning with former Rock Island County Republican Party Chair Bill Bloom and former Rock Island Mayor Mark Schwiebert, a Democrat.
We’ve covered the ComEd bribery scandal that implicates associates of the Illinois House Speaker.
Federal prosecutors are investigating Madigan directly.
This week, Illnois Governor JB Pritzker indicated he will cut the speaker off when it comes to donations.
Pritzker has been one of Madigan’s wealthiest contributors.
Bloom and Schwiebert discussed the implications and if it is a sign Democrats are looking for a new leader in Springfield.
There’s mounting data about how much he’s capitalizing personally off the presidency from campaign donations being funneled to his businesses.
Forbes magazine reports Trump’s business ventures like his golf resorts, hotels and Trump Tower host events for the Republican National Committee, the Trump campaign and joint fundraising committees.
Research by Forbes puts the total at $6.9 million going to Trump’s businesses since he took office.
We also learned this week the district attorney in Manhattan seeking the president’s tax returns doesn’t want the information for the hush money scandal regarding allegations of affairs.
Prosecutors are conducting an insurance and bank fraud investigation.
A lot of this has been drowned out by the daily coverage of the pandemic.
Schwiebert and Bloom addressed what they think the American people’s reaction should be to all of this.
Democrats and Republicans so far remain at odds on the terms of a new pandemic relief package.
House Democrats passed its Heroes Act in May.
Senate Republicans are now pushing what they call the HEALS Act.
There are significant differences.
Here are a few highlights.
The Democrats plan would cost $3 trillion as opposed to $1 trillion from Republicans.
Both propose direct payments of $1,200 to taxpayers.
Democrats would continue the enhanced $600 weekly enhanced unemployment benefit.
Republicans would start it at $200 a week and it could increase over time to 500.
Democrats would expand eligibility of the Paycheck Protection Program and allow applications until the end of the year while utilizing the $130 billion left in the current account.
Republicans want to add another $190 billion.
Public schools would get $58 billion under the Democrats’ plan.
It’s $70 billion from Republicans, but that’s tied to in-person learning.
We see differences in the approach to unemployment for individuals and the Paycheck Protection Program for businesses.
One seems to be a trickle down strategy.
The other a bottom-up policy.
Bloom and Schwiebert shared where they see the balance that needs to be struck.
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