MSNBC's Ruhle challenges Sanders on push for $1,200 stimulus checks

MSNBC’s Stephanie Ruhle challenged Sen. Bernie SandersBernie SandersThe Memo: Trump leaves changed nation in his wake Cori Bush dismisses concerns of being 'co-opted' by establishment The Memo: Biden prepares for sea of challenges MORE (I-Vt.) on Wednesday over his push for $1,200 checks for most Americans amid the negotiations for the next COVID-19 relief bill. 

The host noted during an interview with Sanders on “MSNBC Live” that throughout the Vermont senator’s career, he has been the primary sponsor on 422 bills with only seven passing into law. 

“Given that record, and how dire things are, as you just laid out, do you need to find a different lane or take a different approach here?” Ruhle asked Sanders.


“I don’t think that’s the issue, Stephanie,” Sanders responded, saying other senators are in a similar position on their legislative records in recent years. 

“The issue right now is: Is the United States Congress going to stand for working people or not?” he said. “And I am doing my best to rally not only Democratsm but Republicans as well.”

“The proposal that came out of the White House just yesterday talks not about $1,200 per person but $600. That’s unacceptable,” he continued. “And by the way, they want to do away with all extended unemployment benefits, and that is also unacceptable.” 

Sanders said on Tuesday that he was pushing Senate Majority Leader Charles SchumerChuck SchumerNew York court worker arrested, accused of threats related to inauguration Schumer: Trump should not be eligible to run for office again McConnnell, McCarthy accept Biden invitation to pre-inauguration church service MORE (D-N.Y.) to request a larger COVID-19 relief bill after Democratic leadership showed support for a $908 billion deal last week. 

“I think Democrats are going to have to stand up, fight for a working class in America today that is hurting in a way that we have not seen in recent years,” he said Tuesday.


He joined Democratic Sens. Elizabeth WarrenElizabeth WarrenBiden pick for Pentagon cruises through confirmation hearing Senate Democrats call on Biden to immediately invoke Defense Production Act Biden consumer bureau pick could take over agency on Inauguration Day MORE (Mass.), Ed MarkeyEd MarkeyFive centrist Democrats oppose Pelosi for Speaker in tight vote David Sirota: Democrats gave away leverage in forcing vote on ,000 checks Sanders to slow down NDAA veto override in bid to get vote on K checks proposal MORE (Mass.), Jeff MerkleyJeff MerkleySenate Democrats make democracy reform first bill of new majority Senate Democrats leery of nixing filibuster Biden and the new Congress must protect Americans from utility shutoffs MORE (Ore.), Ron WydenRonald (Ron) Lee WydenSenate Democrats call on Biden to immediately invoke Defense Production Act Yellen champions big spending at confirmation hearing Biden pick for Intel chief vows to release report on Khashoggi killing MORE (Ore.) and Kirsten GillibrandKirsten GillibrandOVERNIGHT DEFENSE: 12 removed from National Guard inauguration security | Austin backs lifting transgender ban Biden Pentagon pick supports lifting transgender military ban Democrats looking to speed through Senate impeachment trial MORE (N.Y.) in signing a “Dear Colleague” letter Tuesday condemning the compromise $908 billion agreement for its lack of direct payments.

Sanders is demanding a larger pandemic relief package, including the direct payment of $1,200 for adults and $500 for their children.

Stimulus talks between Democrats, Republicans and the White House stalled earlier this year as Speaker Pelosi (D-Calif.) called for a $2 trillion relief deal, while Republicans have proposed smaller bills.