- President Donald Trump reiterated his support for $2,000 direct payments to Americans in a tweet on Friday.
- “Why would politicians not want to give people $2000, rather than only $600?” he wrote.
- It’s still unclear if Trump will sign or veto the stimulus relief package, which has been flown out to him in Florida.
- A White House spokesperson did not immediately respond to Insider’s request for comment.
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President Donald Trump has once again called for $2,000 direct payments instead of the $600 checks currently included in the stimulus package.
“Made many calls and had meetings at Trump International in Palm Beach, Florida,” he tweeted Friday afternoon. “Why would politicians not want to give people $2000, rather than only $600? It wasn’t their fault, it was China. Give our people the money!”
It’s still unclear is if Trump will sign – or veto – the $900 billion stimulus relief package, which was flown out to him on Thursday for his signature. The president is currently in Florida where he’s been out golfing.
Trump first criticized the stimulus package Tuesday, saying he would ask Congress to amend the bill to raise direct payments from $600 to $2,000. Following Trump’s support for $2,000 checks, Democrats quickly moved to try and increase the size of the checks.
Democratic leaders attempted to use “unanimous consent” – where every lawmaker had to approve the measure – to increase the size of the checks, but House Republicans ultimately blocked the measure, Insider’s Joseph Zeballos-Roig reported.
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said she that she would bring the House back into session on Monday to vote on $2,000 checks.
If a deal isn’t reached, about 14 million Americans are at risk of losing their unemployment benefits on Saturday, according to The Washington Post. The pandemic has already upended the job market, leaving permanent damage in its wake.
The current stimulus package offers an additional $300 a week in unemployment benefits. Research from this past summer found that the CARES Act – which included $600 in weekly unemployment benefits and a $1,200 stimulus check for many Americans – likely kept 12 million Americans out of poverty.
A White House spokesperson did not immediately respond to Insider’s request for comment.