There’s stimulus, and then there’s stimulus.
Mark Cuban, the investor and owner of the Dallas Mavericks told CNBC’s Make It that he thinks every American, regardless of income, should receive a $1,000 check every two weeks for the next two months. Under Cuban’s plan, “the whole goal is to get that money every two weeks into the economy,” CNBC reported. “Once businesses start having demand, even if they’re closed and working online, then there is a reason for them to be able to bring back employees and retain those employees if demand is sustained.”
But Cuban’s plan would come with a catch: you’d have to spend the money within 10 days, or lose it.
Cuban originally laid out the idea back in May. In a Twitter thread he wrote, “It’s time to face the fact that PPP didn’t work. Great plan, difficult execution. No one’s fault. The only thing that will save businesses is consumer demand. No amount of loans to businesses will save them or jobs if their customers aren’t buying.” He then proposed: “We need to consider an interim spending stimulus program. All 128m households could get a $1k check every 2 weeks for the next 2 months that MUST BE SPENT WITHIN 10 DAYS OF RECEIPT OR IT EXPIRES.”
Cuban has long been a promotor of—and investor in—small businesses through his role on the TV show Shark Tank. He did not clarify in his remarks to CNBC how the government could track who had spent their money, or the total pricetag for such an aggressive stimulus package.
Interestingly, direct payments via stimulus checks have been one of the few items that Republicans and Democrats initially agreed on including in the next package. But talks subsequently broke down over the size of the overall stimulus package, and items like aid to state and local governments, which Republicans opposed. Last week Trump weighed in, saying he was warming up to a bipartisan compromise bill that did include $1,200 direct payments.
Though the death of Ruth Bader Ginsburg and the nascent fight over her replacement has heightened tension on Capitol Hill, on Thursday Treasury Secretary Mnuchin said that negotiations would be starting up again. Nancy Pelosi confirmed that talks would restart, though neither side gave any timeline.
At last count, the two parties were $900 billion apart.