Another coronavirus stimulus package is likely to pass before the end of the month that could further help out-of-work employees, former White House Office of Management and Budget Director Mick Mulvaney said Tuesday, but he fears lawmakers will use the measure for their own political popularity rather than as a means to help fix the economy.
"Passing something during July gives politicians a chance to go home during the fall and campaign with something to talk about," Mulvaney told Fox Business' Maria Bartiromo. "I'm hopeful what's going on right now is trying to figure out how to fashion a stimulus that helps us solve the reason we're in this recession in the first place, which is solving COVID."
Mulvaney also addressed the controversy over the recipients of some of the Paycheck Protection Program loans approved through the CARES Act. Bartiromo commented that money went out to large companies linked to politicians and to other already-wealthy entities, including actor Robert De Niro's restaurants, rapper Kanye West's sneaker line, and a firm linked to House Speaker Nancy Pelosi's husband.
"You're talking about at least $2 trillion that was supposed to go out," said Mulvaney. "Any time you're talking about that sum of money, you're going to have those types of circumstances."
But, he added, the PPP loans "certainly" helped people, including small businesses who benefited, but still, less than half the money from the act is in the economic system.
Meanwhile, with the election approaching, Mulvaney said President Donald Trump should be talking about growth and the economy, rather than focusing on the attacks he's made in recent days.
"I think it's just over 7 million jobs in the last two months," he said. "Retail sales are up, home sales in May I think set a record. So there's good news there ... If Joe Biden has a history of anything, it's not being able to get the country out of a slow economy."
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