Monday 1 March 2021
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- 1 month ago

Joe Biden says he is willing to adjust income thresholds for a fresh wave of stimulus payments in new relief package

Summary List PlacementPresident Joe Biden said on Monday he is open to adjusting the income thresholds for a fresh wave of stimulus checks for Americans, a key demand among some moderate senators reluctant to back his rescue package. There is legitimate reason for people to say, do you have the lines drawn the exact right way? Biden said during a press conference. Should it go to anybody making over x number of dollars? I m open to negotiate those things. Biden said he included more stimulus payments because they drew support from Democrats and some Republicans last year. Former President Donald Trump demanded a higher stimulus payment amount in a frenzied last-minute push in December. The remarks signal Biden s willingness to negotiate elements of his rescue package to garner GOP support. His plan includes a provision for a $1,400 top-up to $600 checks sent out in December, bringing the full amount to $2,000 for taxpayers. The larger direct payments have sparked criticism from some economists who argue its effectiveness is undercut by their distribution to higher earners who didn t lose jobs and are likelier to save them instead. The House approved a plan for $2,000 checks in December, and the bigger cash amounts mean they phase out more slowly. For example, the payments would fully phase out for single adults earning $115,000. Biden didn t rule out using a budgetary process called reconciliation to go around Republicans and enact a rescue package in a majority party-line vote. The decision to use reconciliation will depend upon how these negotiations go, he said. It s becoming more likely that renewed federal aid may not be approved for several more weeks. White House press secretary Jen Psaki said on Monday that Congress should pass another government rescue package by the middle of March to avoid a lapse in unemployment benefits for millions of Americans. There s an urgency to moving it forward and he certainly believes there needs to be progress in the next couple of weeks, Psaki said. The spokesperson also referred to the unemployment cliff in the middle of March as an apparent deadline for legislative action. Congress enacted a $900 billion economic assistance plan last month to renew these federal measures. Currently, around 11.4 million people receive benefits from the set of programs which start to expire on March 14. Unemployment experts say that Congress must step in to prevent another lapse in benefits by February 14.Join the conversation about this story NOW WATCH: How the Navy s largest hospital ship can help with the coronavirus


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