APPROVAL for a third round of stimulus checks is taking longer than expected as the president signalled some may not be eligible for the next payment.
President Biden will negotiate with Senators to ensure cross-party support for his $1.9trillion Covid relief packageCredit: AFP or licensors
The criteria for Americans eligible for $1400 stimulus checks may changeCredit: Getty Images – Getty
It means the direct payments may be more targeted to lower-income Americans than Biden first proposed in his original plan outlined during the transition period.
If follows the Biden administration trying to deflect Republican concerns that his $1.9 trillion pandemic relief proposal was too expensive – as Biden seeks to “heal” rifts and create unity in the Senate.
Some Republican senators objected to such a hefty package only a month after Congress passed a $900 billion relief measure.
As such February would likely be the earliest we could see a package approved with some analysts predicting it could be mid-March before Amercians receive the much needed third payment.
Once approved, the U.S. Department of the Treasury could distribute checks in a matter of days.
On Sunday, the Biden administration met privately with a bipartisan group of 16 senators who were among those instrumental in crafting and delivering the most recent round of Covid aid.
The Biden administration met privately with a bipartisan group of 16 senators including Joe ManchinCredit: The Hill
Winning over Dem. Manchin and Rep.Senator Susan Collins (pictured) would be crucial to working with a bi partisan congress in futureCredit: EPA
The ability to win over that coalition, led by Sens. Susan Collins, R-Maine, and Joe Manchin, D-W.Va., will be central to any path, a test-run for working with Congress on a bipartisan basis.
Yesterday, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said the Democrats could pass the plan as soon as next week, saying families and businesses in need can’t wait.
“We want it to be bipartisan always but we can’t surrender,” she said.
The previous round of stimulus checks, including the $600-per-person check approved in December, was generally limited to individuals earning less than $75,000 a year.
It also covered married couples earning less than $150,000.
According to new research from Opportunity Insights, families earning around $75,000 are likely to quickly spend the funds which helps stimulate the economy.
To contrast, those who make more than $75,000 usually put it in savings.
As such, researchers say this shows the money wasn’t urgently needed.
It comes as more than 430,000 people have died of COVID-19 in the US, with recent government figures showing a jump in those claiming unemployment benefits to 965,000.