President Trump signs COVID relief and spends bill to prevent closure. What happens now?

President Trump’s Sunday night decision to sign the COVID relief / government spending plan combination will halt tomorrow night. The government was funded Monday at 11:59 p.m. But Trump’s signature means the government is now funded until September 30, 2021.

The president slammed the combination package last week – although the top four two-chamber, dual congressional leaders and his own finance minister, Steve Mnuchin, negotiated the final plan.

The plan was approved by 359 votes in the House and 92 votes in the Senate.


President Trump has objected to the terms of foreign aid he saw as ‘pig’ in spending spending on the combination measure – although the president asked for much of the money in his budget request sent to Congress earlier this year. Many Republicans were opposed to any stimulus tests. But after wrestling, the parties decided on $ 600 checks. Last week, the president, who was absent from the negotiations, demanded $ 2,000 direct payments and refused to sign the legislation.

House Democrats therefore set up an account to provide for $ 2,000 paychecks. This bill will be on the floor late Monday. At this point, Fox News is being told the House will subject it to a two-thirds vote for passage. See if the Republicans are joining the president now – or focusing their efforts.

By treating this bill as a ‘suspension measure’ (a process that speeds up the bill on the floor but requires a two-thirds vote for passage), the plan cannot be approved. But Fox News is told by a member of the House’s GOP leadership that the measure should ensure two-thirds.

Democrats are essentially daring Republicans to vote no. Reaching the two-thirds threshold is a challenge. But if the House goes through the usual process for the bill, the measure will simply be subject to a simple majority to pass it.


Democrats drafted the bill to make the implementation of $ 2,000 checks conditional on the president signing the COVID / government funding combination plan. Once the president saw the opportunity for the $ 2,000 with the planning of an account, he agreed to sign the plan.

If the House passes the bill, it will go to the Senate.

Sen. Roy Blunt, R-Mo., Stated on Christmas Eve that he did not think the Senate would have the appetite to tackle $ 2,000 in direct payments.

Then the question is whether the Senate can handle such a package. The bill could be subject to one if not two filibusters. One, just to start a debate on the bill. The other, to conclude the debate on the bill. Both steps require 60 votes to neutralize a filibuster. And if the Senate does it according to the book, the measure could take several days to process. However, if the Senate has the cooperation of all 100 senators, it could move very quickly.

However, one senior IDP source doubts that the Senate can tackle the plan as soon as it comes from the House. And Trump’s maneuver puts GOPers in a short spot. Support his plan and turn their position around – just because he said so – or, their husband stands and faces the president’s anger.

If the president had not signed the package, Washington would be closing the government.


It is now obvious that no one really knows what the president would sign. Or, did President Trump make several congressional leaders, hundreds of Republicans and key players in his government make him believe that he would sign this particular package? Unclear.

If Congress had faced a threat of government closure, the House and Senate would have rushed in conventional circumstances to draft another interim bill. But it was not in the cards. For Congress, it was this bill or nothing. It was too much of a legislative lift just to advance this plan. And even if there was an emergency bill, no one knew if the president would sign it.

On top of that, there was a problem with planning the holiday.

The House meets Monday afternoon. The Senate will only meet on Tuesday. This means that there would be a strike if President Trump did not appear before 11:59:59 p.m. Monday did not want to sign the current bill.

A shutdown of the government is always bad. But a shutdown now would have meant the second shutdown around the holiday in three years.

A termination means that federal law enforcers, who work under COVID conditions, are not paid. It may also have delayed the introduction of the coronavirus vaccine. Or those accused of distributing the vaccine may have worked, without pay.

A shutdown could have meant for Pentagon civilian employees. Active military personnel are considered essential, but depending on the duration of the shutdown, they would probably not have received salaries.

TSA sieves and air traffic controllers are considered essential for processing holiday, pandemic trips. But they would not be paid. Would they have been willing to work for free under such circumstances?

Recall that conspicuous absences by air traffic controllers began to threaten safety during the close of 2018-2019. Their error led to the end of the strike.

And for anyone who demands that Congress pay a strike during a government strike, you have no luck.

The 27th amendment of the Constitution is clear:

“No law amending the remuneration of the services of senators and representatives shall enter into force until an election of representatives has taken place,” the amendment reads.

In other words, legislators get paid no matter what. Call or not. One can reason what “vary” means. Some members may prefer to place their payment on bail or donate their salaries to charity during this period. But they are still ‘paid’. There may only be a “difference in remuneration” until the 2022 midterm elections.

Do you not like it?

Get a three-quarters vote of all states and two-thirds of both the House and Senate to amend the Constitution.

But President Trump has signed the bill. This means that there will be no question about government funding until next autumn.

And then President Biden’s election will decide whether or not to sign.