WASHINGTON (NEXSTAR) — President Donald Trump said Wednesday his administration is considering “dramatic” Phase 4 stimulus payments this year and stressed he is not concerned about a second wave of coronavirus.
In an interview with Nexstar Broadcasting, Trump discussed the possibility of Phase 4 stimulus payments this summer.
“I think we’re working on something that’s going to be very dramatic, very good,” Trump said on Wednesday. “I think we are looking at a Phase 4. Phase 1, 2 and 3 have been fantastic for people, generally…small business owners, also. But we’re looking at doing something else in addition.”
In an interview with Nexstar’s Anna Wiernicki, Trump also talked about whether he was concerned about a second wave of COVID-19.
“No, I’m not because we know how to put it out,” Trump said. “We may have flames and we may have embers, but I was talking to Mike Pence the other day and he was saying that out of over 3,000 counties, there is just a very tiny proportion of them that have any kind of a little bit of an outbreak. And what we’ve done is we’ve closed that down and we take care of it. But no, I’m not concerned about it at all.”
Last month, Trump mentioned the possibility of a domestic travel credit called “Explore America” being offered as part of a second round of stimulus payments.
While Trump did not mention a specified amount, U.S. tourism industry lobbyists have been circulating a proposal in Washington that would give people an extra $4,000 in tax breaks to spend at U.S. theme parks, restaurants, hotels and other travel-related businesses, the Orlando Sentinel reports.
It’s not yet clear what form, if any, a second round of economic stimulus payments to Americans might take, but White House economic adviser Kevin Hassett said last week that the odds of a Phase 4 stimulus package “are very, very high,” according to the Wall Street Journal.
According to FOX Business, Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin suggested on June 10 that the Trump administration is considering sending Americans another round of stimulus checks to aid in the economic hardships caused by the coronavirus pandemic.
“I think we’re going to seriously look at whether we want to do more direct money to stimulate the economy,” Mnuchin reportedly said during the Senate Committee on Small Business and Entrepreneurship.
Full transcript of President Donald Trump’s interview:
Wiernicki: Yesterday, you met with the families of the victims of police violence and racially motivated attacks. What did you learn from them and how will this impact how you address the issue moving forward?
Trump: Well, I met with a number of families yesterday that said their whole lives were shattered by what happened. In most cases, it was a problem with police and…it’s devastating when you meet with them and you hear the stories. It’s devastating. And we have great police, great law enforcement, but you have people that make mistakes and you have some bad ones, too. We always have bad no matter where you go, no matter what profession. But it was very devastating to hear some of the stories.
Wiernicki: Will it be more difficult to unite the country in the middle of a reelection campaign?
Trump: I don’t think so. I think that we’re doing really well with respect to the re-election. We’re going to Oklahoma, as you know, on Saturday. We have over a million requests for tickets. There’s never been anything like that. Nobody’s ever heard of such a thing, and there’s a great feeling I think … it’s just a great pride in the country. We got hit by China with the virus, or the plague as I call it. It shouldn’t have happened. They did a big mistake. We just made a great trade deal. They’re really buying a lot of product. They’re living up to the deal, so far. They are buying tremendous products from farmers and from manufacturers and everything else. But it sort of … it made me feel really bad when I saw what happened. They said a plague is floating in from China, and that’s basically what it was … and not a good situation.
Wiernicki: Yesterday, Sen. Tim Scott was here for the signing of your executive order. Today, he unveiled the Republicans’ plan to address police reform, the Justice Act. Will you support it?
Trump: Well, I will and I’ve looked at it… and this was a step that we took yesterday. We took that first step, just like we did with criminal justice reform… which we call the first step. But we took that first early… we made the early move. Let’s see what happens with the Democrats. They want to have… you know they want to defund.. I mean they literally want to defund our police and frankly, they would abolish a police if we weren’t here. If we weren’t here to watch it, you would have no police. I don’t know what system they use. I think they’ll have all social workers or something… but this is crazy. You see some of the people that we have to deal with and frankly whether we like it or not some of the criminal minds that we have to deal with. You saw that the other day with a man is pushing a 92-year-old lady onto the sidewalk onto her face. And that’s beyond anything but police… you need really strong, good police but with heart and with compassion and that’s mostly what we have. So they want to defund and they want to abolish police… and you look at what’s going on in Minneapolis and you look at what’s going on and take Seattle as an example. Look at that mess. They don’t want any police. They want no police at all in Seattle. And what’s going to happen to the woman that has a house being broken into — man and wife, woman alone, man alone. They have no 911. They have no… who are they gonna call? Who are they going to call? And I think they’re saying just talk to the people breaking the G. has a 12 o’clock in the evening. So no… we want to have very strong police. I want law and order. I’m about law and order. I brought it out 5 days after they started they wouldn’t use the National Guard. I brought the National Guard… I told them I said ‘You gotta get the National Guard.’ We got them in. Everything stopped in Minneapolis… it was really an amazing thing actually to see and they had no problems after we called out the Guard. So you need strong people… you need strength… you have to control your streets. You can’t let this happen and the Democrats don’t want to do that. They want to defund and I don’t even I can’t even fathom how they can say it.
Wiernicki: Should people be expecting another stimulus check this summer?
Trump: I think we’re working on something that’s going to be very dramatic, very good. I think we are looking at a Phase 4. Phase 1, 2 and 3 have been fantastic for people generally… small business owners, also. But we’re looking at doing something else in addition. The economy is really starting to roar. We had the greatest job numbers in our history last month. We had great retail numbers … also the best in history. Up 17.7 percent … they were expecting 6 percent, 5 percent, maybe 7 percent then we were 17.7. So the economy is roaring back … the plague as I call it. The virus is abating … we know how to handle it. We know where to go and how to do it. Again, it should have never happened. China should have stopped it. They could have stopped it easily. They should have stopped it and they didn’t do that and we’ll have that out there … it will be a point of discussion very soon. But we’re really starting to do well. I think we’re very close to a vaccine. The vaccine is going to happen. The therapeutics are happening already … we really are at a point now where a lot of good things are happening medically. I meet with the various doctors and the lab people and they are the most brilliant in the world and … we’re very close to having a vaccine, in my opinion.
Wiernicki: Are you nervous for a second wave of the virus?
Trump: No, I’m not because we know how to put it out. We may have flames and we may have embers, but I was talking to Mike Pence the other day and he was saying that out of over 3,000 counties, there is just a very tiny proportion of them that have any kind of a little bit of an outbreak. And what we’ve done is we’ve closed that down, and we take care of it. But no, I’m not concerned about it at all.