Stimulus check update: Report says White House eyeing $1 trillion package

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WASHINGTON (NEXSTAR) — A top aide to Vice President Mike Pence said Tuesday the White House is looking at a second stimulus package totaling around $1 trillion.

“There’s obviously been a lot of stimulus put in the system over the last couple bills and so the price tag for us would be that,” Marc Short, Pence’s chief of staff, said during an interview on Bloomberg Radio.

Bloomberg’s Saleha Mohsin first reported the possibility of a $1 trillion package.

Mohsin noted provisions for the next round of relief could include changes to unemployment benefits, a back-to-work tax credit for workers returning to their jobs, a payroll tax cut, liability protections and tax decisions for companies for workers’ restaurant and entertainment expenses.

This report follows White House Chief of Staff Mark Meadows signaling support Monday for additional stimulus while noting there are proposals beyond the direct checks sent to taxpayers earlier this year.

“I think the president’s been very clear that he’s supportive of another stimulus check,” White House Chief of Staff Mark Meadows said Monday. “And yet at the same time, we want to make sure that we’re addressing things in a real, systemic way, whether that is making sure that the take-home check for every American is greater with a payroll-tax deduction, whether it’s making sure that we provide incentives for American manufacturing to be brought back from abroad.”

At the end of June, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell said the Senate will consider a second stimulus package in July.

“As you’ve heard suggested, I said back in March we would take another look at this… probably in July… take a snapshot of where we are, both on the healthy front and the economic recovery front, and decide at that point what needs to be done further,” McConnell said last week.

In late March, President Trump signed a $3 trillion stimulus package into law that included one-time payments of up to $1,200 for eligible Americans. As the weeks have turned into months since the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act was passed, many Americans are wondering if, and when, a second check or prepaid debit card will arrive as the pandemic continues.

One proposal currently on the table is the HEROES Act, a $3 trillion bill, that includes $275 billion for testing and healthcare worker hazard pay, and a trillion dollars for state and local governments.

The HEROES Act was passed by House Democrats in May and would offer another round of $1,200 checks to American adults and children. It also expands the number of people who are eligible to receive government aid by including college students and older teenagers. The payments would be capped at $6,000 per household.

Congress and the Senate are on recess until July 20. It’s unlikely the Senate will consider any additional relief packages before July 20.

Sen. Sherrod Brown released the following statement regarding a second economic stimulus payment:

“We know these stimulus checks provided critical support for Ohio families as they continue to face a once-in-a-lifetime pandemic as well as a major economic downturn that led to layoffs for thousands of Ohioans. For many of these Ohioans, these stimulus checks provided a lifeline to make the rent or pay for groceries or cover healthcare costs. But we know a one-time lifeline isn’t enough. The fastest and simplest way to help Ohio workers and families is to put money directly in people’s pockets. My original plan called for bigger checks for more people – $2,000 per person, adults and children. And we called for them to be sent automatically throughout the year, every quarter, until the economy stabilizes. I’ll keep fighting for help for Ohio families who are struggling and work to put money in the pockets of working Ohioans hurting as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.”

 Sen. Rob Portman’s Deputy Communications Director released the following statement to FOX8,
“As we move forward with negotiations on the next relief package, Rob is open to additional relief but believes it should be targeted at those who need it most while also providing incentives to get individuals safely back to work and to get the economy back up and running.”

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