A team of unlikely U.S. Senators, Bernie Sanders and Josh Hawley, are proposing $1,200 COVID-19 stimulus checks for each qualifying American. Hawley is a Republican from Missouri, and Sanders is an independent from Vermont. Couples would get $2,400 under the plan.
On Twitter, Sanders wrote, “People all over the country are thinking: Does the government hear their pain? Does their government give a damn about them? If we rally the American people, we can make sure Congress provides at least a $1200 payment for every working class adult.”
“I introduced an amendment with @HawleyMO that would provide a direct payment of $1,200 for working-class individuals, $2,400 for couples and $500 for kids,” Sanders wrote on Twitter.
The announcement came as negotiations between the Republican-controlled Senate and Democratic-controlled House remain in a standstill. There have been varying proposals on stimulus relief: A skinny bill by Republicans, a larger plan by Democrats, a bipartisan proposal that attempts a compromise.
Many of those efforts deal with a larger stimulus relief plan, and a second round of stimulus checks has been caught up in haggling over the plan’s overall price tag. The Sanders/Hawley plan would change that by zeroing in on direct payments to Americans in need. The $1,200 figure floated in their plan matches the amount given to Americans in the first round of stimulus checks when the pandemic initially hit.
Here’s what you need to know:
Sanders Says Congress Must Address ‘the Economic Emergency’
According to the Hill, Sanders said it’s wrong for Congress to not deliver help to Americans before the holidays.
“This Congress must address the economic emergency facing the American people. We cannot go back to our families during the Christmas holidays while tens of millions of families are suffering,” Sanders said during a floor speech, according to The Hill.
The Hill reported that Hawley had initially proposed a standalone bill, but then Sanders reached out to him and suggested they team up. It’s part of a growing bipartisan effort to find a solution to the stalemate.
On December 10, Sanders wrote on Twitter, “It would be outrageous and unacceptable for members of Congress to go home when tens of millions of working families are facing economic desperation. We must act now.”
Hawley Says Congress Needs to Find a Way to Help Working Families & Individuals
Hawley said in a floor speech: “If the Senate of the United States can find hundreds of billions of dollars to give to big government and big business, surely it can find some relief for working families and working individuals.”
Of his pairing up with Bernie Sanders, Hawley wrote on Twitter, “I’ll work with anybody who wants to take on the establishment and get relief for working families.”
He too called on Congress to vote before Christmas, tweeting, “I’ll say again, working families ought to be FIRST for #COVID19 relief, not last. That’s why I’ve joined @SenSanders in legislation to provide direct assistance to every working family that needs it. The Senate must vote on this before Christmas.”