Policy

Continetti: GOP Could Get Payroll Tax Cut by Trading State Bailouts

Washington Free Beacon founding editor Matthew Continetti said President Donald Trump could get the payroll tax cut he's looking for if GOP lawmakers make a deal with Democrats on bailing out state governments.

"If President Trump wants his payroll tax cut or [Missouri senator Josh] Hawley's payroll tax rebate, the bargaining chip there is the state bailout that [Speaker of the House] Nancy Pelosi wants," Continetti said on Fox News's Special Report Monday. "So if there's going to be any hope of compromise, which is not something you hear much about in Washington these days, it's trading that payroll tax cut for the bailout of the state governments, red and blue, that are sorely hurt by the coronavirus epidemic."

On Sunday, the president said he would refuse to sign another coronavirus recovery bill without a payroll tax cut.

"I want to see a payroll tax cut on both sides, a very strong one, because that’s going to really put people to work," Trump said during a Fox News virtual town hall.

Sen. Hawley has similarly suggested a payroll tax rebate, which would cover 80 percent of employer payroll costs for the duration of the pandemic.

Pelosi (D., Calif.) on Monday said she would oppose a payroll tax cut in any upcoming legislation when asked by CNN's Wolf Blitzer.

"This is all to be related to the coronavirus," she said. "Nobody is putting things on the table saying, ‘Unless we have this, we are not doing that.' He shouldn't either."

A second Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) bill would be the fourth piece of coronavirus relief legislation passed since March.

Continetti said that a CARES 2 bill, if passed, would likely be "some of the most significant legislation Congress will pass in a while."

A new Labor Department report coming Friday is expected to show that unemployment rose to 16.1 percent in April, shattering the one-month record for unemployment in the United States.