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Leading Democrats have backed legislation by “Squad” members Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D., N.Y.) and Rashida Tlaib (D., Mich.) to send all Americans a $2,000 stimulus check.
President Trump called for $2,000 checks in a video posted on Twitter Monday evening, after Congress passed an omnibus bill that included coronavirus relief and stimulus checks of $600. The relief bill was negotiated after months of delays, however Trump called the package a “disgrace.”
Following Trump’s remarks, Ocasio-Cortez and Tlaib announced a standalone bill that would send out $2,000 checks.
“Glad to see the President is willing to support our legislation,” Ocasio-Cortez wrote on Twitter. “We can pass $2k checks this week if the Senate GOP agrees to stand down.”
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D., Calif.) and Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D., N.Y.) both touted the plan.
“I’m in. Whaddya say, Mitch?” Schumer wrote. “Let’s not get bogged down with ideological offsets and unrelated items and just DO THIS! The American people deserve it.” Pelosi said that “Democrats are ready to bring this to the Floor this week by unanimous consent.”
Senate Republicans have in general been wary of putting a high price tag on a new coronavirus relief bill. While Democrats pushed for a $2 trillion package before the general election, Republicans have sought to keep another round of relief below $1 trillion.
Among Senate Republicans, Josh Hawley of Missouri has been vocal in his support for higher stimulus checks.
President Trump “is right – workers deserve much more than $600, as I have repeatedly said & fought for,” Hawley posted on Twitter on Monday. “And there’s obviously plenty of $$ to do it – look at what Congress threw away on corporate giveaways & foreign buyouts. Let’s get it done.”
Hawley introduced his own standalone bill last week that would have provided $1,200 checks to most Americans but Senator Ron Johnson, a fellow Republican, blocked the bill, citing concerns about the deficit.