Harris, Sanders, Markey propose $2,000 monthly payments amid coronavirus pandemic

A trio of senators is introducing legislation to provide $2,000 in monthly payments during, and in the immediate aftermath of, the coronavirus pandemic. 

The bill, from Sens. Kamala HarrisKamala Devi HarrisSenators push foreign media to disclose if they are registered as foreign agents Warnock raises almost M in Georgia Senate race in second quarter Liberal veterans group urges Biden to name Duckworth VP MORE (D-Calif.), Bernie SandersBernie SandersDemocratic senator will introduce bill mandating social distancing on flights after flying on packed flight Neil Young opposes use of his music at Trump Mt Rushmore event: 'I stand in solidarity with the Lakota Sioux' Democratic strategist Andrew Feldman says Biden is moving left MORE (I-Vt.) and Ed MarkeyEdward (Ed) John MarkeyGOP senators debate replacing Columbus Day with Juneteenth as a federal holiday The Hill's Campaign Report: Jacksonville mandates face coverings as GOP convention approaches Steyer endorses Markey in Massachusetts Senate primary MORE (D-Mass.), would provide a $2,000 monthly payment to individuals who make up to $100,000 per year. The amount would then be scaled down until it hit an income cap of $120,000 per year for an individual, where it would be phased out altogether.

Under the bill, a $2,000 monthly payment would also be given per child, up to three children. The legislation would be retroactive to March, the same month President TrumpDonald John Trump Trump responds to calls to tear down monuments with creation of 'National Garden' of statues Trump: Children are taught in school to 'hate their own country' Trump accuses those tearing down statues of wanting to 'overthrow the American Revolution' MORE declared a national emergency, and would provide the monthly payments until three months after the administration ends the public health emergency.

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The push for additional payments comes after the $2.2 trillion stimulus bill that passed Congress in March provided a $1,200 check for individuals who make up to $75,000. 

But senators argued that the one-time payment is not enough to assist people through the months-long pandemic, which has wreaked havoc on the nation's economy.

"It’s clear that wasn’t nearly enough to meet the needs of this historic crisis. Bills will continue to come in every single month during the pandemic and so should help from government," Harris said in a statement. 

Sanders added that the direct assistance provided under the coronavirus package was "not nearly enough." 

“If we can bail out large corporations, we can make sure that everyone in this country has enough income to pay for the basic necessities of life," he said. 

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Though Republicans haven't signaled support for another round of checks — and have called for a "pause" before passing additional legislation — the idea of providing a monthly payment for the duration of the coronavirus has growing support among Democrats. House Speaker Nancy PelosiNancy PelosiOn The Money: Breaking down the June jobs report | The biggest threats facing the recovery | What will the next stimulus bill include? Military bases should not be renamed, we must move forward in the spirit of reconciliation Pelosi: Trump 'himself is a hoax' MORE (D-Calif.) and other lawmakers voiced support for the idea during a conference call this week, and Sanders has previously pitched a $2,000 monthly payment. 

“A single check is not sufficient for households that are struggling during this health and economic crisis. Americans need more than just one payment," Markey said. 

To help ensure that the payments go to every U.S. resident, the Treasury Department could use information from tax returns or information provided by other state and federal agencies. 

The bill would also prohibit the monthly payments from being seized by debt collectors amid reports and pushback from lawmakers that the one-time checks under the March coronavirus bill could be subjected to private debt collection. 

Harris led a letter last month urging Treasury Secretary Steven MnuchinSteven Terner MnuchinOn The Money: Breaking down the June jobs report | The biggest threats facing the recovery | What will the next stimulus bill include? On The Money: Economy adds 4.8M jobs in June | Unemployment to average 6.1 percent through 2030: CBO | Mnuchin says no regrets on pushing to reopen Treasury approves 0 million loan to company being sued for overcharging Pentagon MORE to draft regulations that would prevent private debt collectors from being able to garnish the coronavirus payments.