On the Money: GOP lowers unemployment plus-up in new COVID-19 bill | Collins to vote against Fed nominee Shelton | Worries grow over job growth

On the Money: GOP lowers unemployment plus-up in new COVID-19 bill | Collins to vote against Fed nominee Shelton | Worries grow over job growth
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Happy Monday and welcome back to On The Money. I'm Niv Elis, filling in for Sylvan Lane, with your nightly guide to everything affecting your bills, bank account and bottom line.

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Write us with tips, suggestions and news: slane@thehill.com, njagoda@thehill.com and nelis@thehill.com. Follow us on Twitter: @SylvanLane, @NJagoda and @NivElis.


THE BIG DEAL — After a week of infighting and delays, Senate Republicans unveiled their version of a 5th Coronavirus relief bill on Monday.

The GOP proposal, according to Treasury Secretary Steven MnuchinSteven Terner MnuchinMcConnell focuses on confirming judicial nominees with COVID-19 talks stalled Hillicon Valley: FBI chief says Russia is trying to interfere in election to undermine Biden | Treasury Dept. sanctions Iranian government-backed hackers On the Money: Pelosi draws line at .2T | Jobless claims dip | Swing-state jobless numbers an issue for Trump MORE, will transition from a flat $600 in extra weekly payments to payments equal to roughly 70 percent of an individual's previous wages. 

But because states will need time to transition their unemployment systems, the bill proposes an interim, two-month period during which the flat $600 would drop to $200 a week.

Democrats pounced on reports that Republicans will propose cutting the weekly unemployment benefit while states transition to a wage-based unemployment benefit.  

"The White House is once again showing that it has zero understanding of the desperation of unemployed Americans. My message to Republicans is this: if you think $200 a week is enough to live on, you try it first," Sen. Ron WydenRonald (Ron) Lee WydenGOP senator blocks Schumer resolution aimed at Biden probe as tensions run high Republican Senators raise concerns over Oracle-TikTok deal Hillicon Valley: TikTok, Oracle seek Trump's approval as clock winds down | Hackers arrested for allegedly defacing U.S. websites after death of Iranian general | 400K people register to vote on Snapchat MORE (D-Ore.) tweeted on Monday. 

The talks with Democrats over a final bill are expected to be rocky, and could last into mid-August, well after key benefits have expired.

Read more from Jordain Carney here.


Other key points:

LEADING THE DAY: Sen. Susan CollinsSusan Margaret CollinsThe Hill's Campaign Report: Biden asks if public can trust vaccine from Trump ahead of Election Day | Oklahoma health officials raised red flags before Trump rally Gideon leads Collins by 12 points in Maine Senate race: poll Senate leaders quash talk of rank-and-file COVID-19 deal MORE (Maine) said Monday that she will vote against Judy Shelton's Federal Reserve Board nomination, becoming the second Republican senator to oppose President TrumpDonald John TrumpHR McMaster says president's policy to withdraw troops from Afghanistan is 'unwise' Cast of 'Parks and Rec' reunite for virtual town hall to address Wisconsin voters Biden says Trump should step down over coronavirus response MORE's controversial nominee.

"I have serious concerns about this nomination. In her past statements, Ms. Shelton has openly called for the Federal Reserve to be less independent of the political branches, and has even questioned the need for a central bank," Collins said in a statement.

"This is not the right signal to send, particularly in the midst of the pandemic, and for that reason, I intend to vote against her nomination if it reaches the floor," she added.

The opposition from Collins, a moderate GOP senator who faces a tough reelection bid, comes after Sen. Mitt RomneyWillard (Mitt) Mitt RomneyGOP-led panel to hear from former official who said Burisma was not a factor in US policy Joe Biden's dangerous view of 'normalcy' The electoral reality that the media ignores MORE (Utah) became the first Republican to say he will vote against Shelton.

Read more about Trump’s latest troubled nomination here.

The Hill has an event later this week you won't want to miss.

American Resilience: The Future of Small Business--Thursday, July 30 

Small businesses are fundamental to the idea of America. What steps should be taken to ensure that businesses that really need the help are receiving aid, particularly minority-owned businesses that are often overlooked? On Thursday, July 30, The Hill Virtually Live hosts a discussion on public and private efforts to support America’s entrepreneurs featuring Sen. Jeanne ShaheenCynthia (Jeanne) Jeanne ShaheenSenate Democrats introduce bill to sanction Russians over Taliban bounties Trump-backed candidate wins NH GOP Senate primary to take on Shaheen Democratic senator urges Trump to respond to Russian aggression MORE and Rep. Steve ChabotSteven (Steve) Joseph ChabotLawmakers call for expanded AI role in education, business to remain competitive The Hill's Morning Report - Sponsored by The Air Line Pilots Association - Pence lauds Harris as 'experienced debater'; Trump, Biden diverge over debate prep The Hill's Morning Report - Sponsored by The Air Line Pilots Association - Trump, Biden couldn't be more different on climate change MORE. RSVP today--link (smallbusinessresilience.splashthat.com/thehill)

Slip in job growth raises fear of broader relapse: The job market recovery from the coronavirus recession is faltering as the U.S. braces for a steep decline in fiscal support from Congress despite the burgeoning pandemic.

As the rapid spread of the novel coronavirus smothers economic activity across the U.S., two months of stellar job gains have begun to slip and lawmakers remain far apart on a new round of federal aid.

The Friday lapses of a $600 weekly boost to jobless benefits and a national eviction ban bode poorly for the growing number of Americans seeking unemployment aid.

New weekly applications for unemployment insurance increased last week for the first time since March, according to the Labor Department, and the number of employed Americans declined by 4.1 million between the first and second weeks of this month, according to weekly Census Bureau data released Thursday.

Those dire signs of deepening economic damage could spell trouble for the July jobs report, which some economists fear will show the first net decline in U.S. employment since April.

Sylvan Lane has more here


  • The Federal Reserve’s Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC) begins its two-day July meeting.

  • The Senate Homeland Security and Government Affairs Committee holds a hearing on oversight of COVID-19 financial relief packages, 10 a.m. 


The Joint Economic Committee's hearing on “reducing uncertainty and restoring confidence during the Coronavirus recession” scheduled for Tuesday has been postponed. No new date yet.


  • Gold prices hit record amid economic turmoil.

  • First Phase 3 test of coronavirus vaccine candidate begins in US

  • Trump's national security adviser tests positive for coronavirus



It’s not in the newest COVID bill, but Trump’s idea of a payroll tax holiday still has some supporters.