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

Rep. Ayanna PressleyAyanna PressleyWarren says she'll run for reelection to Senate Bush testifies before Congress about racist treatment Black birthing people face during childbirth, pregnancy Genetic material from 1993 killing revealed years after another man executed for crime, groups say 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."

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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 SandersOvernight Health Care: CDC approves Pfizer vaccine for adolescents aged 12-15 | House moderates signal concerns with Pelosi drug pricing bill | Panel blasts COVID-19 response Briahna Joy Gray: Warren not endorsing Sanders in 2020 was 'really frustrating' House moderates signal concerns with Pelosi drug pricing bill 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 HawleyMore than 75 Asian, LGBTQ groups oppose anti-Asian crime bill Senate Commerce Committee advances Biden's FTC nominee Lina Khan Republicans' 'marriage bonus' is social engineering at its worst 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 JohnsonRand Paul clashes with Fauci over coronavirus origins Sunday shows preview: Coronavirus dominates as White House continues to push vaccination effort Overnight Health Care: WHO-backed Covax gets a boost from Moderna 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 McConnellBiden says Beau's assessment of first 100 days would be 'Be who you are' McConnell says he's 'great admirer' of Liz Cheney but mum on her removal McConnell: 'Good chance' of deal with Biden on infrastructure MORE (R-Ky.) and House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthyKevin McCarthyWarren says Republican party 'eating itself and it is discovering that the meal is poisonous' Biden: McCarthy's support of Cheney ouster is 'above my pay grade' On The Money: Inflation jumps at fastest pace since 2008 | Biden 'encouraged' on bipartisan infrastructure deal 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 TrumpWarren says Republican party 'eating itself and it is discovering that the meal is poisonous' More than 75 Asian, LGBTQ groups oppose anti-Asian crime bill McConnell says he's 'great admirer' of Liz Cheney but mum on her removal 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.