White House: Trump thinks payroll tax cut 'must' be part of next COVID-19 relief package

White House: Trump thinks payroll tax cut 'must' be part of next COVID-19 relief package
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The White House on Thursday emphasized that President TrumpDonald John TrumpNew Bob Woodward book will include details of 25 personal letters between Trump and Kim Jong Un On The Money: Pelosi, Mnuchin talk but make no progress on ending stalemate | Trump grabs 'third rail' of politics with payroll tax pause | Trump uses racist tropes to pitch fair housing repeal to 'suburban housewife' Biden commemorates anniversary of Charlottesville 'Unite the Right' rally: 'We are in a battle for the soul of our nation' MORE thinks a payroll tax cut is a must-have in the next coronavirus relief package.

"As he has done since the beginning of this pandemic, President Trump wants to provide relief to hardworking Americans who have been impacted by this virus and one way of doing that is with a payroll tax holiday," White House spokesman Judd Deere said in a statement. "He’s called on Congress to pass this before and he believes it must be part of any phase four package."

Work on the next coronavirus relief package is expected to heat up next week, when lawmakers return to Washington following a recess.

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Trump has been pushing for a payroll tax cut for months. In a Fox News virtual town hall in May, the president said that he had told Treasury Secretary Steven MnuchinSteven Terner MnuchinOn The Money: Pelosi, Mnuchin talk but make no progress on ending stalemate | Trump grabs 'third rail' of politics with payroll tax pause | Trump uses racist tropes to pitch fair housing repeal to 'suburban housewife' US Chamber asks Treasury to clear up 'serious concerns' about payroll tax deferral Pelosi, Mnuchin talk but make no progress on ending stalemate MORE that "we’re not doing anything unless we get a payroll tax cut."

But a payroll tax holiday has not been a top priority for lawmakers on either side of the aisle. Democrats have been opposed to such a move, and some Republicans have also been cool to the idea.

A spokesperson for Senate Finance Committee Chairman Chuck GrassleyCharles (Chuck) Ernest GrassleyThe Hill's Morning Report - Presented by Facebook - The choice: Biden-Harris vs. Trump-Pence Trump grabs 'third rail' of politics with payroll tax pause On The Money: McConnell says it's time to restart coronavirus talks | New report finds majority of Americans support merger moratorium | Corporate bankruptcies on pace for 10-year high MORE (R-Iowa) said Thursday that "a number of tax relief proposals will be part of the discussion" among lawmakers and the administration.

The top Democrat on the panel, Sen. Ron WydenRonald (Ron) Lee WydenElection security advocates see strong ally in Harris OVERNIGHT ENERGY: Watchdog report raises new questions for top Interior lawyer | Senate Democrats ask Trump to withdraw controversial public lands nominee | Border wall water use threatens endangered species, environmentalists say Watchdog report raises new questions for top Interior lawyer MORE (D-Ore.) said that "a payroll tax cut would do nothing to help the 20 million workers who have lost their jobs, and little for those working significantly reduced hours."

He said that a better course of action would be to extend the enhanced unemployment benefits that are set to expire at the end of the month.