Pelosi says House to vote on bigger stimulus payments after GOP blocks increase
House spokeswoman Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., Said Thursday that House Democrats would vote on Monday on a standalone bill that would allow Americans to make direct payments of $ 2,000 per person.
Their announcement came moments after the House Republicans blocked a Democratic offer to increase payments from $ 600 per person, as passed in the stimulus bill earlier this week, to $ 2,000.
“On Monday I will be taking the house back to a meeting where we will have a recorded vote on our standalone bill to increase the economic impact payments to $ 2,000. Voting against this bill means denying the families' financial plight and denying them the relief they need, "Pelosi said in a statement Thursday morning.
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"Hopefully by then the president will have signed the bipartisan and bicameral legislation to keep the government open and provide coronavirus aid," she added.
The House is now adjourned until Monday afternoon, and Members will also vote on whether or not Trump's veto of the annual Defense Approval Act will be suspended.
Thursday's failed vote was just the final chapter in the ongoing history of legislature attempts to pass a massive stimulus package designed to bring economic relief in the face of the crippling Covid-19 pandemic and subsequent economic collapse.
Earlier this week, President Donald Trump slashed year-end spending and the Covid-19 aid package, declaring that it contains too many non-pandemic provisions and too stingy on payments to average Americans. The $ 900 billion aid package passed by both chambers of Congress included a new round of direct payments and aid to unemployed Americans, families and businesses hit by the pandemic.
In a video that Trump posted on Twitter Tuesday night, Trump complained that the $ 600 stimulus checks included in the bill were too small, arguing that qualified individuals were $ 2,000 and couples $ 4,000 US dollars should be received.
Following Trump's comments, House Democrats rushed to plan a vote that would increase payments as Trump demanded. Because many of the members of the house are out of town, the leaders tried to pass the law unanimously, which meant any individual member could kill it.
Failure to move forward Thursday morning puts further doubt on the future of imminent financial relief for millions of struggling Americans.
House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer, D-Md., Beat up House Republicans Thursday for blocking the increase in direct aid to Americans and Trump because they haven't yet passed the laws on mass spending and relief supplies sitting on his desk had signed. Hoyer repeatedly referred to Trump's videotaped statement calling the $ 600 direct payments "insufficient" and said that is why "we responded this morning". The unanimous motion to approve the passage of the increased payments "matched the president's motion," Hoyer said.
A senior Senate Republican called on Trump Thursday to sign the bill, adding that he did not support increasing payments.
"The best way out is for the president to sign the bill, and I still hope he does," Sen. Roy Blunt, R-Mo, chairman of the Republican Senate Political Committee, told reporters Thursday.
When asked if a bill to increase direct payments checks from $ 600 to $ 2,000 would get the 60 votes required for Senate passage, Blunt said, "It wouldn't."
Trump's comments on Tuesday left Washington in chaos after lawmakers spent months negotiating a deal on the largest bill in 2020 and many frustrated that Trump waited so long to voice his concerns after largely dismissing the negotiation process.
Before Trump spoke, all the signs and expectations had been that he intended to sign the relief bill as soon as it lands on his desk, possibly later this week. This is what the White House aides said.
House Democrats, who had advocated higher direct controls only to meet Republican resistance in the Senate, immediately hailed Trump's support for sending more money.
Already passed by Congress, the bill has two bills that have been combined: one was the Covid-19 Bill on Facilitation and Incentives, and the other was a big spending bill to fund the government through next September. Unless the spending bill is enshrined in law, the government must begin closing on Tuesday.
Pelosi tweeted Thursday afternoon that the bill would be sent to the president and asked him to sign it.
Earlier in the day, Hoyer said, "We are not going to close the government," adding, "We are considering options and what steps we will take."
After the vote on the direct payments failed, House Republicans unanimously moved to reconsider the foreign aid portion of the $ 1.4 trillion omnibus spending package, which the Democrats blocked. Trump had railed against lavish foreign spending in his comments earlier this week, despite the fact that his own budget proposal contained the provisions he had singled out for criticism.
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