President Donald Trump on Thursday said stimulus negotiators were “starting to have some very productive talks,” days after his jaw-dropping decision to shut down discussions with leading Democrats.
“I closed the talks two days ago because they weren’t working. Now they’re starting to work. We’re starting to have some very productive talks,” he said during an interview on Fox Business channel.
“I said look we’re not going anywhere: turn it off. I didn̵
US stock futures slightly expanded their gains in premarket trading following Trump’s comments. At 8:30 am ET, Dow futures indicated an initial climb of more than 240 points.
The office of House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, the top Democrat in negotiations with the White House, did not immediately respond to CNBC’s request for comment. Pelosi and Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin, who leads negotiations for the White House, resumed telephone discussions on air aid on Wednesday.
Trump’s comments on Thursday morning came two days after he announced on Twitter that he had ordered White House negotiators to abandon talks with Democratic leaders to conclude a new Covid-19 stimulus deal.
“I have ordered my representatives to stop negotiating until after the election when, immediately after winning, we will pass a major Stimulus Bill that focuses on hardworking Americans and small businesses,” Trump tweeted Tuesday.
That decision baffled economists and politicians alike, as further aid received broad support from the Federal Reserve, Wall Street, Democrats in both Houses of Congress, some Republicans, and the American public.
However, the president said Thursday that he believes Pelosi will continue working with the White House as both Republicans and Democrats believe additional fiscal support is warranted. He also continued to blame China for the public health crisis and economic downturn caused by the coronavirus.
“He wants it to happen, he doesn’t want it not to happen,” Trump said. “Because it’s so good for our country, we really need it. It wasn’t our workers ‘fault, it wasn’t our airlines’ fault that China did this terrible thing to us.”
The Democrat-led House passed a stimulus bill last week that would include $ 600 a week in extra unemployment benefits through January, send another $ 1,200 direct payment to most Americans, and authorize a second round of loans. the salary protection program.
But that bill’s $ 2.2 trillion price tag drew criticism from Senate Republicans, who opposed Democrats’ demands for legislation that they consider unnecessarily profligate. The GOP favors a smaller, more focused approach with less funding for state and local governments.
Many of the nation’s top economic officials warn that political squabbles and a failure to approve additional protections for employers and workers could hold back the economic recovery from a recession earlier this year and stagnate the U.S. labor market.
Fed Chairman Jerome Powell, a Trump appointee and one of the nation’s top economic officials, said Tuesday hours before the president’s tweets that the U.S. economic outlook could deteriorate again if Congress fails to reach a deal. to release more relief.
Failure to reach a deal could “lead to a weak recovery, creating unnecessary inconvenience for households and businesses” and thwart a rebound that has so far progressed faster than expected, he said at the time.