Pressley calls $600 stimulus checks an 'insult' to struggling Americans

Rep. Ayanna PressleyAyanna PressleyBelfast's Troubles echo in today's Washington Federal government carries out 13th and final execution under Trump The Hill's Morning Report - Biden asks Congress to expand largest relief response in U.S. history MORE (D-Mass.) called the second round of proposed $600 stimulus checks for Americans an "insult" as Congress has deliberated for months over an additional COVID-19 relief bill.

The representative for Massachusetts spoke on the House floor Thursday, calling the proposed monetary stimulus checks sent to U.S. residents as part of the upcoming coronavirus relief package "hardly sufficient."

"Four hundred and fifty pennies a day for the last nine months," she said. "That's what our government has sent the American people to weather this crisis. And nothing for the immigrant families who drive our essential workforce. It didn't have to be this way."


The upcoming relief checks are slated to be only half of the $1,200 amount that was first distributed to Americans in mid-April.

"Our families deserve real survival checks. Six hundred dollars is hardly sufficient. It is an insult. We must act to save lives now," Pressley added.

Allies along the progressive aisle have contended alongside Pressley's argument, such as Sen. Bernie SandersBernie SandersFormer Sanders spokesperson: Biden 'backing away' from 'populist offerings' Amanda Gorman captures national interest after inauguration performance Woman who made Sanders's mittens says she's sold out MORE (I-Vt.), who argued the congressional $900 billion budget limit for the next COVID-19 relief package is "much too low."

Sen. Josh HawleyJoshua (Josh) David HawleySenate approves waiver for Biden's Pentagon nominee For Biden, a Senate trial could aid bipartisanship around COVID relief Senate Democrats file ethics complaint against Hawley, Cruz over Capitol attack MORE (R-Mo.) has also been in concordance with Sanders, pushing to provide Americans with a larger stimulus check of at least $1,200.

On Friday, Sen. Ron JohnsonRonald (Ron) Harold JohnsonGOP senators call for commission to investigate Capitol attack Wisconsin Democrats make ad buy calling on Johnson to resign Efforts to secure elections likely to gain ground in Democrat-controlled Congress MORE (R-Wis.) blocked attempts to add larger monetary amounts to the individual stimulus checks, citing concerns the COVID-19 relief should be targeted and alarm about the nation's debt.

The initial COVID-19 package passed in April cost the federal government a record-breaking $2.2 trillion. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnellAddison (Mitch) Mitchell McConnellTrump selects South Carolina lawyer for impeachment trial McConnell proposes postponing impeachment trial until February For Biden, a Senate trial could aid bipartisanship around COVID relief MORE (R-Ky.) and House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthyKevin McCarthyMcCarthy supports Cheney remaining in leadership amid calls for her to step down The Hill's 12:30 Report: Biden hits the ground running on COVID Biden's inauguration marked by conflict of hope and fear MORE (R-Calif.) have voiced opposition for the upcoming package to surpass the $1 trillion mark.

Earlier this month, McConnell and McCarthy reportedly told the White House they would support the inclusion of $600 stimulus checks in the upcoming package.

The Washington Post reported Thursday two anonymous officials told the news outlet White House aides intervened after President TrumpDonald TrumpIran's leader vows 'revenge,' posting an image resembling Trump Former Sanders spokesperson: Biden 'backing away' from 'populist offerings' Justice Dept. to probe sudden departure of US attorney in Atlanta after Trump criticism MORE proposed during a phone call earlier that afternoon to push for "at least" $1,200 per person or even up to $2,000 per person.

The president was reportedly drafting a formal demand for larger payments when White House aides stopped him, informing him that doing so could jeopardize sensitive negotiations over the economic relief package in Congress, as legislators have already deliberated for months over the delayed spending package.