Senator Bill Cassidy optimistic about final push for new COVID stimulus plan
WASHINGTON - After a months-long battle to get another stimulus plan approved, lawmakers only have one more shot.
"It's the only game in town. It's this or nothing. We hope it can pass,” Senator Bill Cassidy said in a conference call to reporters Tuesday.
Monday night, a bipartisan committee restructured the previous failed package into two parts: $748 billion for businesses and the unemployed and $160 billion for state and local governments.
The aid for governments is the most controversial and least likely to pass. But Cassidy, who supports both bills, feels good about them.
"The reason that we make a big push to get the legislative language introduced last night is because it is do or die. It's going to be put into the year-end spending package or it won't pass. Those negotiations are taking place all this week. But we do think it's a good package, and if I was a betting person I do think that it will be included or some form of it."
Cassidy also addressed the vaccine, calling it the ultimate fix.
"I tweeted that the coronavirus vaccine should be Time magazine's person of the year, because that is what's going to end this crisis."
That said, he plans to wait his turn to get it.
"I've been previously infected. I think that makes me immune. I would take the vaccine just to prove the point. But, since it's scarce right now, I'd rather save it for someone who might need it."
While the vaccine will certainly improve the country's health, it's financial health depends on this stimulus.
If no agreement is reached before Christmas, unemployment is set to run out for nearly 12 million Americans the day after.