House Votes to Increase Stimulus Checks to $2,000
The House of Representatives voted late on Dec. 28 to amend the COVID-19 relief bill to boost direct payments to Americans to $2,000 from $600.
A two-thirds majority was required to pass the bill. It passed the Democratic-majority House in a 275–134 vote; the measure now heads to the Republican-majority Senate for consideration.
The move comes after President Donald Trump used the Impoundment Control Act of 1974 to increase the stimulus payment amount to $2,000 and remove what he called “wasteful spending” from the relief bill.
“As President, I have told Congress that I want far less wasteful spending and more money going to the American people in the form of $2,000 checks per adult and $600 per child,” Trump wrote in a White House statement late on Dec. 27.
The Impoundment Control Act of 1974 allows the president to make demands to Congress, although Congress ultimately decides whether they will accept his demands and any rescissions and vote on them.
Trump signaled that he would invoke the act on Dec. 27, writing, “I will sign the Omnibus and Covid package with a strong message that makes clear to Congress that wasteful items need to be removed.
“I will send back to Congress a redlined version, item by item, accompanied by the formal rescission request to Congress insisting that those funds be removed from the bill,” he added. “I am signing this bill to restore unemployment benefits, stop evictions, provide rental assistance, add money for [small business loans], return our airline workers back to work, add substantially more money for vaccine distribution, and much more.”
The House and the Senate on Dec. 21 had passed a $900 billion COVID-19 relief bill following at least six months of back-and-forth negotiations. The measure advanced alongside a $1.4 trillion annual federal spending package to keep the federal government funded for another year.
Trump has been constantly urging Congress to pass a measure to counter the effects of the CCP (Chinese Communist Party) virus pandemic. He responded to the $900 billion COVID-19 bill late on Dec. 22, saying that he might not sign off on it unless Congress amended the bill to increase the “ridiculously low” $600 in direct payments to Americans to $2,000.
He also said that the bill didn’t provide enough economic aid for small businesses, which have been hit hard as a result of pandemic-related restrictions.
“Congress found plenty of money for foreign countries, lobbyists, and special interests while sending the bare minimum to the American people who need it,” Trump said in a video recorded in the White House’s Diplomatic Reception Room. He also pointed out that the bill allows stimulus checks for the family members of illegal aliens, amounting to up to $1,800 each.
The president in October called for a “stand alone bill” that would provide direct payments of $1,200 to Americans.
“I am ready to sign right now. Are you listening, Nancy?” he wrote on Twitter at the time.
This story is developing, please check back for updates.
Update: Trump Officially Demands Congress Rescind Foreign Aid!
A lot of people are posting misinformation about what happened last night with Trump signing the stimulus bill into law. Today, I am going to explain to you what actually happened and how the fight is still not over.
Last night, President Trump received calls from the GOP leadership. They informed the President that if he chose to veto the stimulus bill, the Republicans would team up with Democrats to override it. The only thing he would accomplish would be causing a one week delay (which would inevitably hurt Americans relying on unemployment to get by).
You see, this stimulus bill has always been a political game of ‘hot potato.’ Everyone knew that unemployment benefits expired on December 27. Whoever was left holding the bill once December 27th came along was going to have to either cave or become the ‘bad guy.’ If Trump had vetoed it the minute it reached his desk, then the ‘hot potato’ would have gone back to Congress. Then, Nancy Pelosi and Mitch McConnell would have had two options: work through the Christmas Weekend or get blamed for the shutdown. But Trump didn’t do that. Once again, he got terrible advice and was left holding the ‘hot potato’ when the deadline came around.
So, Trump signed it, but he did so with conditions. Unlike governors in some states, Trump couldn’t use a line-item veto (cross out parts of the bill he doesn’t like). The Supreme Court ruled in 1998 that line item vetoes were unconstitutional. Instead, Trump dug deeper into the law and used the Impoundment Control Act of 1974.
Essentially, Trump signed the bill but then declared that all of the foreign aid Congress had passed was unnecessary to the functioning of the government. This declaration kicks off a process known as “rescission,” which places a hold on the spending for 45 legislative session days. Congress can vote to override the rescission and force the foreign aid disbursement, or they can sit back and wait 45 days for the holds to automatically lift.
Yes, Trump signed the bill into law. But foreign countries and special interests will have their aid funding blocked for 45 legislative days unless Congress holds another on-the-record vote to release it (or cut it entirely).
You cannot let the Left’s insane foreign aid spending go into effect! Send your urgent FaxBlast to Congress now and DEMAND that they hold an immediate vote to approve Pres. Trump’s cuts to foreign aid!
The GOP hates this. They don’t want to be forced to hold another on-the-record vote. Most of them are claiming that they didn’t know what was in the bill when they voted for it the first time. The last thing they want to do is be forced to vote without being able to use their ignorance as a shield. Obviously, Conservatives want to force the vote in order to get a chance to kill this foreign aid spending once and for all.
Democrats are in a similar bind. They don’t want to be caught deliberately voting for this much foreign aid, given how many Americans could use the assistance. How can a Democrat claim to be a man or woman for the people when they are voting to send tens of billions abroad? Leftists, though, want to force a vote to put the Establishment in a tough position.
The Establishments of both parties want to just sit back and let the 45 days pass so the funding can be unfrozen without any Congressional action. But Leftists and Conservatives want to force a vote (albeit for very different reasons).
I wish that Trump had just vetoed it when it first reached his desk. It would have been so much easier had he done that. But, as the old saying goes: You play with the cards you’re dealt.
We fought hard to have this foreign aid funding clawed back and revoked. Trump’s decision to invoke the Impoundment Control Act of 1974 gives us a chance to do just that… but only if you fight for it!
The only reason that Congress got away with passing this monstrosity of a bill in the first place is that they voted before the public (or even Members of Congress) had a chance to read the bill. This lets them brag about the good things in the bill while claiming they didn’t know about the bad…
There is no way this out-of-control foreign aid spending would survive another on-the-record vote. Now that the public knows what was packed into the bill, no Republican or Democrat could possibly get away with voting to send 10 million to Pakistani gender studies programs or 15 million to help repair a Sri Lankan boat. I don’t care what party they belong to: no Senator or Congressman could look their constituents in the eye and say that it was more important to bailout foreign small businesses than it was to help American business owners in need.
If Congress is forced to hold an up or down vote on this foreign aid spending, it will fail.
It is up to YOU to force that vote!
It is up to YOU to make sure all Members of Congress – Congressmen and Senators, Republicans and Democrats – understand that they will not be able to survive (politically) having passed this insane foreign aid package into law. It is up to YOU to hold their feet to the fire and force them to claw it back.
The clock is ticking. You need to fight back NOW!
Stop the Left’s insane foreign aid spending from going into effect! Quick, you must send your urgent FaxBlast to Congress now and DEMAND that they hold an immediate vote to approve Pres. Trump’s foreign aid rescissions!
Rise up now!