Editor’s Note: Congress has since killed hopes of passing a $2,000 stimulus bonus on Christmas Eve. Read about it here.
If Congress is successful at increasing stimulus checks from $600 to $2,000 it would mark a pivotal moment federal response to the Coronavirus Pandemic.
Earlier this week Congress passed a bill that would send $600 to most Americans who make less than $75,000 as individual earners. That relief, while important, drew wide criticism – not only for the length of time it took to pass it – but also for the size of the check. It took months for Congress to reach agreement on any deal at all since the CARES Act was passed in the spring.
The bill passed Monday also included a lot of controversial appropriations, which drew heavy criticism from Democrats and Republicans. The total cost of issuing $600 checks to Americans that make less than $75,000 was around $200 billion. However, the total cost of the bill that was passed, which included spending in other parts of the world, would cost nearly $1 trillion.
After the relief bill was passed by both chambers of Congress – President Donald Trump published a video calling for stimulus checks to rise to $2,000 per person, or $4,000 per couple.
Now, Democrats plan to take action on Christmas Eve and pass the $2,000 stimulus checks via unanimous consent. That will only work if every Republican goes along with it, though. If that fails, lawmakers will bring full-bills to the floor on Monday to restart the process.
“I will NEVER accept a bad deal, which is why I have sent the COVID Relief Bill BACK to Congress,” Trump said in an email published Wednesday. “This bill is a DISGRACE. It’s called the COVID Relief Bill, but it has almost nothing to do with COVID, and it provides minimal relief for the American People.”
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