GOP Senator Marco Rubio calls for $ 2,000 stimulus checks to heal ‘divided nation’

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Topline

In a letter first obtained by Axios, Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.) Called on President-elect Joe Biden to lobby Congress for legislation on $ 2,000 stimulus checks on his first day of office, invoking the need to heal a “deeply divided nation.” “

Highlights

Rubio said that while he was worried about the long-term effects of further stimulus spending (like most, if not all, of his GOP colleagues), lawmakers “cannot ignore” the fact that millions of families need more help. .

The increase in out-of-pocket payments from $ 600 (as authorized by the new relief plan signed by President Trump just after Christmas) to $ 2,000 will cost the U.S. government $ 363.8 billion, according to the Joint Committee on Taxation.

Rubio added that passing legislation for $ 2,000 checks, outside of what he described as “normal political games”, would send a “positive message” and be interpreted as a demonstration of unity between Democrats and Republicans.

Biden has repeatedly expressed support for increasing direct stimulus payments to $ 2,000, and the vast majority of Democratic lawmakers agree with the plan.

The measure faced some rejection from Senator Joe Manchin (TBEN.Va.), a Tory Democrat whose vote will be critical to passing the legislation, who said last week that larger checks should be targeted more closely on those who actually lost. jobs and income.

Crucial quote

“It would send a powerful message to the American people if on the first day of your presidency you asked the House and Senate to send you a bill to increase direct payments to struggling Americans during the pandemic from $ 600 to 2000. $, ”Rubio wrote.

Key context

While lawmakers will not be able to focus on an ambitious economic agenda while the impeachment process against President Trump is underway, the new Senate Majority Leader, Chuck Schumer (DN.Y.), has asked lawmakers to consider additional relief measures for Covid-19, including $ 2,000 stimulus checks – the “first order of the day” of the new Senate.

Further reading

Scoop: Rubio asks Biden for $ 2K stimulus checks as call for unity (Axios)

Schumer on $ 2,000 stimulus checks amid Trump impeachment: ‘We’re going to get there’ (TBEN)

Here’s what we know about Biden’s massive stimulus package coming this week (TBEN)

While Democrats set to take Senate, Schumer aims to pass $ 2,000 stimulus checks first (TBEN)

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