Democrats set to cap stimulus check income at $ 50,000 per year for individuals

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Top line

Some senior Democratic officials are ready to set an income limit of $ 50,000 for the next round of stimulus checks, according to The Washington Post, as Democrats try to build support from those like West Virginia Senator Joe Machin (D) to help push through President Joe Biden’s $ 1.9 trillion stimulus package.

Highlights

The idea is only in the conversation phase and has not been incorporated into legislation, according to the To post, citing sources familiar with the discussions.

Discussions reportedly included an income cap of $ 50,000 for individuals, $ 75,000 for heads of households and $ 100,000 for joint filers in order to receive complete checks, a significant decrease in eligibility limits compared to previous checks.

For now, Democrats are offering full checks to people earning less than $ 75,000 and joint filers earning less than $ 150,000 per year, the same eligibility criteria used for previous sets of checks.

Democrats on Tuesday passed a budget resolution aimed at pushing the stimulus package through the weakest of margins – 50-49 – without a single senator crossing party lines.

The White House has requested stimulus checks of $ 1,400 and has signaled that the reduction in the payment amount is not up for negotiation, although details of who qualifies for the checks are apparently still being chopped up.

Income ceilings would bring the Democratic package more in line with a republican proposal released Monday, which called for $ 1,000 stimulus checks that would go to people earning less than $ 40,000 per year with lower payouts for single filers earning up to $ 50,000 per year.

Surprising fact

President Joe Biden’s administration has been pushing to extend stimulus check eligibility for some who previously could not receive checks, including young Americans such as students who are still claimed as dependents by their parents.

Large number

$ 1.9 trillion. This is how expensive the stimulus package proposed by the Democrats is. It includes increasing the national minimum wage to $ 15 an hour, $ 400 a week in federal unemployment benefits and hundreds of billions of dollars for state and local governments, among other initiatives. The proposed Republican plan costs around $ 618 billion.

Key context

Democrats appear poised to move forward on the package even as Republicans call for more negotiations, saying Biden is breaking his promise of increased unity and two-party politics. But Biden and other leading Democrats have stressed that the priority is for the package to be passed quickly. Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (DN.Y.) said on Tuesday that Biden “fully agrees” with using the reconciliation process to pass the stimulus package, which only requires a simple majority. Democratic leaders won a major victory on Tuesday in hopes of pushing the stimulus package through this process, when Manchin – widely regarded as the most conservative Senate Democrat –voted to go ahead with the reconciliation process, even after arguing that stimulus checks need to be more specifically targeted than before. Each Democrat voted in favor of the decision without a single Republican vote to back it.

Further reading

The White House is open to reducing those eligible for stimulus checks but keeping payments at $ 1,400 per person (The Washington Post)

Senate Democrats advance Biden’s $ 1.9 trillion stimulus package, with or without Republican backing (Forbes)

New details on $ 618 billion GOP stimulus package released as Schumer launches ‘take it or leave it’ offer (Forbes)

Conservative Democrat Joe Manchin says he won’t delay Biden’s $ 1.9 trillion stimulus package (Forbes)

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