Speed Reads

it's dead

Rand Paul comes out against Trump's payroll tax deferral: 'Probably a mistake'

President Trump's payroll tax deferral is effectively dead.

Pretty much no one, Senate Republicans included, wanted to put a payroll tax cut Trump was pushing for in the next coronavirus relief bill. And Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.) seemingly put the final nail in the coffin on Thursday as he told Fox News it's "probably a mistake" to do so.

Paul, a libertarian who reliably opposes any expansion of government spending, stuck to his guns on Thursday when he opposed the "skinny" CARES Act Republicans are starting to push as coronavirus relief talks remain stalled. A pared down package is "just Democrat lite," Paul said, before going on to clearly oppose extending boosted unemployment benefits and stimulus checks to Americans.

But a potential reward for Americans getting back to work — Trump's payroll tax deferral — was also "probably a mistake," Paul said, because it would hurt the Social Security trust it funds. And as Forbes' Andrew Solander noted, Paul's opposition will likely seal the end of the proposition. Kathryn Krawczyk