On The Money: Congress faces sprint to avoid shutdown | McConnell sees need for short-term funding | Trump vows to release report on finances before election | White House to consider tax-cut package next year | CBO says deficit surpassed $1T

On The Money: Congress faces sprint to avoid shutdown | McConnell sees need for short-term funding | Trump vows to release report on finances before election | White House to consider tax-cut package next year | CBO says deficit surpassed $1T
© Greg Nash

Happy Monday and welcome back to On The Money. I'm Sylvan Lane, and here's your nightly guide to everything affecting your bills, bank account and bottom line.

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THE BIG DEAL--Congress faces sprint to avoid another shutdown: Congress is bracing for a three-week sprint to avoid the second government shutdown of the year.

Lawmakers are returning to Washington on Monday, and they'll have 16 working days to reach a deal to fund the government by Oct. 1 or pass a spending patch to kick the fight closer to the holidays. 

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But the House and Senate are coming back to town with plans to move forward on different tracks. House Democrats are focused on passing a continuing resolution (CR), while Senate Republicans are set to make a late start at moving fiscal 2020 bills. 

The Hill's Jordain Carney fills us in here

 

The dispute: Lawmakers need to pass 12 appropriations bills, either individually or as a package. While the House has already passed 10 of the 12 bills, the Senate held back while Trump and congressional leadership negotiated a two-year budget deal. 

  • Senate Republicans are pushing forward with their plan to start work on the 12 individual appropriations bills and are hoping to get at least one package to Trump's desk before Oct. 1.
  • But House Democrats argue that any talk of trying to get a package of fiscal 2020 bills to Trump's desk this month is unfeasible because of the tight timeline and would set up a similar dynamic that led to the last shutdown. 

 

The fear: Last year, Congress had passed funding for five bills but still needed to get a deal on other pieces of government funding, including the Department of Homeland Security. Instead, the government plunged into the longest shutdown in modern history. Few, if any, want that to happen again.

 

McConnell talks short-term bill: Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnellAddison (Mitch) Mitchell McConnellHillary Clinton: Voter suppression has led to 'crisis in democracy' in the US New York Times authors blame Kavanaugh correction on editing error: 'There was zero intent to mislead' The Hill's Morning Report - What is Trump's next move on Iran? MORE (R-Ky.) on Monday said he would make funding the government "a major focus" in September, but that a short-term continuing resolution would be needed to avoid a government shutdown on Oct. 1.

"I'm confident we can make significant progress on regular appropriations this month and then pass an interim continuing resolution to prevent any funding lapse while that work continues," McConnell said from the Senate floor.

McConnell had previously indicated that a short-term patch of some kind would be needed. Asked during a briefing earlier this year if the Senate would be able to pass all 12 appropriations bills before the end of the fiscal year, the GOP leader said they likely would not.

More from Jordain Carney on McConnell's comments here.

 

ON TAP TOMORROW:

 

LEADING THE DAY

Trump vows to release report on finances: President TrumpDonald John TrumpBusiness, ballots and battling opioids: Why the Universal Postal Union benefits the US Sanders supporters cry foul over Working Families endorsement of Warren California poll: Biden, Sanders lead Democratic field; Harris takes fifth MORE on Monday pledged to release a report detailing his financial holdings before November 2020 amid increased scrutiny of government spending at his family's properties.

"At some point prior to the election, I'm going to be giving out a financial report of me, and it will be extremely complete," Trump told reporters as he left the White House for North Carolina.

"I'm going to give out my financial condition and you'll be extremely shocked that the numbers are many, many times what you think," he added.

Trump did not respond to reporters asking whether that meant he will release his tax returns.

The president broke with decades of precedent in 2016 by refusing to release his tax returns. He has yet to release his returns, which are now the subject of a lawsuit filed by House Democrats. More from The Hill's Brett Samuels on Trump's pledge here.

Timing: Trump's promise to release a financial report before Election Day came as he defended himself in the wake of reporting that the Air Force stopped over at his family's Turnberry, Scotland, resort and after Vice President Pence spent two nights at the Trump property in Doonbeg, Ireland.

"I don't need to have somebody take a room overnight at a hotel," Trump said. More from Morgan Chalfant on that Trump controversy.

 

Mnuchin says White House will consider another tax-cut package next year: Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said Monday that the Trump administration will consider proposing a new tax-cut package next year, while arguing that the economy is strong.

"We'll be looking at tax cuts 2.0, something that will be something we'll consider next year," Mnuchin told reporters, according to Politico. "But right now, the economy is in very, very good shape."

Mnuchin's comments are in line with comments that President Trump and others in his administration have also said in recent weeks. 

The context: 

  • The comments come amid some warnings from Wall Street that the U.S. could be heading toward a recession. Members of the administration, however, have maintained that the U.S. economy continues to be strong.
  • Republicans think that more tax cuts could boost the U.S. economy in the long run, along with Trump's reelection chances.

 

CBO says deficit passed $1T: The federal deficit surpassed $1 trillion in the first 11 months of fiscal 2019, the Congressional Budget Office (CBO) said Monday.

The deficit presently stands at $1.068 trillion, though it is likely to be reduced in September as quarterly tax payments are paid.

"In its most recent baseline projections, CBO estimated that the 2019 budget deficit would be $960 billion," the CBO noted. That amount would be $181 billion higher than last year's deficit.

The deficit as of Monday was running $168 billion ahead of the deficit in the last fiscal year at this time.

More from Niv on the CBO numbers here.

 

Democrats hit HUD for missing Puerto Rico disaster relief deadline: House Democrats say they plan to hold a hearing on why the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) missed a crucial deadline for allocating the most recent batch of disaster relief funds to Puerto Rico.

  • HUD Secretary Ben Carson last week missed a deadline for allocating $8.9 billion in Community Development Block Grant funds from June's supplemental disaster relief bill, Democrats wrote in a letter Thursday that was made public on Monday.
  • The lawmakers said Carson had published allocations for other states and territories that needed the funds, such as California, Texas, Georgia, Louisiana, and at the last minute, the U.S. Virgin Islands as well--but not Puerto Rico.

 

GOOD TO KNOW

  • The U.S. tech industry is pushing Congress to pass President Trump's revised North American trade pact, arguing the stalled legislation would modernize trade law to accommodate the digital economy.
  • The Club for Growth on Monday urged its allies to step up their push to press President Trump to take executive action to reduce capital gains taxes.
  • A coalition of 50 attorneys general will be investigating Google for potential violations of antitrust law, a step that could potentially lead to a broad legal challenge to the company's market dominance.

 

ODDS AND ENDS

  • JPMorgan Chase has created a 'Volfefe index' to track and quantify the impact President Trump's tweets have on financial markets.
  • Apple and its manufacturing partner Foxconn on Monday acknowledged that they employed too many temporary workers in China while rebutting claims of lapses in people management, Reuters reported.