Jamie Dimon blames ‘childish behavior’ in Congress for coronavirus aid standstill

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CEO of JPMorgan Chase Jamie Dimon slammed congress for a month-long standstill over another Coronavirus Relief package to help American workers and families still reeling from the pandemic-related recession.

“We have this big debate: is it $2.2 trillion, $1.5 trillion? You must be joking,” Dimon said at a New York Times virtual conference on Wednesday. “Just share the baby and move on. This is childish behavior on the part of our politicians.”

Congress has struggled for months to reach agreement on another round of emergency aid after passing the $2.2 trillion CARES Act in March.

While there is broad support among members of both parties for another deal, they disagree on the scope and scope of it, even as lifelines that supported the economy in the early weeks of the pandemic — like the $670 billion paycheck -Protection program a one-time $1,200 stimulus check and sweetened unemployment benefit – expired months ago.

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Important political differencesincluding funding for a virus testing plan, state and local governments and tax cuts for low- and middle-income families, have puzzled lawmakers since May and remain no less of a challenge in the weeks following the 2020 election.

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif. and Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, DN.Y., asked Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., to resume negotiations Tuesday. But McConnell’s preference for a bill somewhere in the $500 billion range, and Democrats’ stance that at least $2.2 trillion is needed for relief efforts, make it unclear whether lawmakers will be able to reach an agreement before the end of the year .

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Dimon, who blamed neither party, urged lawmakers to agree to another stimulus package and said it would act as a bridge of sorts until mid-2021 while the world awaits widespread vaccine distribution. He said there was “deep, deep frustration” in the country, especially among low-income workers who have been hardest hit by the unemployment crisis.

“There’s a big part of our country that’s really struggling,” Dimon said. “That’s what we should focus on. This has nothing to do with Democrats and Republicans. It’s about helping these people get through the toughest part of COVID, and we’re not done with that.”

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Dimon also said that in addition to supporting individual workers and businesses, another stimulus package would likely boost the country’s economy.

“If no stimulus comes, the probability of a good economic outcome decreases,” he said.

With just 12 legislative days left on the calendar, this gives Congress limited time to work through its ambitious agenda – which includes passing a spending bill to avoid a government shutdown.

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