Jul 23, 2020 - Politics & Policy

Mnuchin says coronavirus relief bill will not include payroll tax cut

Mnuchin and Trump walk together in the foreground with Bill Barr in the background, all wearing suits and ties
President Trump, Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo in the Rose Garden on May 29. Photo: Win McNamee/Getty Images

Senate Republicans' upcoming coronavirus relief proposal will not include a payroll tax cut, Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin told reporters Thursday.

Between the lines: Trump had recently said he wouldn't sign a new stimulus bill without a payroll tax cut — something many people expected he'd be forced to cave on, given its unpopularity among Senate Republicans.

  • It's the first of potentially many losses for the White House in this next tranche of funding, as Republicans show they're willing to push back on his priorities.
  • Economists largely agreed that the payroll tax cut would do little to help the economy.

What they're saying: "The president's very focused on getting money quickly to workers right now and the payroll tax takes time, so we'll come back and look at that," Mnuchin said.

  • "He likes the payroll tax calculation. We think it's the right, long-term policy … but he understands that direct payments work now," Mnuchin added.
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