GOP senators propose stimulus checks of $1,000 for both adults and children

Four Republican senators on Thursday introduced a bill that would create a second round of coronavirus relief payments, providing more money to children and less to adults compared to the first round.

Under the bill from GOP Sens. Bill Cassidy (La.), Steve Daines (Mont.), Mitt Romney (Utah), and Marco Rubio (Fla.), both adults and children would receive stimulus payments of $1,000.

The payments that Congress provided for in legislation enacted in March, known as the CARES Act, were $1,200 per adult and $500 per child.

Adult dependents, who are not eligible for payments under the CARES Act, would also be eligible for payments of $1,000 under the Republican senators’ proposal.

The senators said their bill is aimed at focusing coronavirus assistance on families. They noted that under their bill, a family of two parents and two children would receive $600 more than they did under the CARES Act.

“Much of the burden of the pandemic has fallen on parents and children. This legislation prioritizes their needs by providing resources for school supplies, childcare, and other unexpected expenses,” Cassidy said in a news release.

The senators’ bill comes as Republicans and Democrats are negotiating over another coronavirus relief package. Lawmakers in both parties have said they want the legislation to include a second round of direct payments to Americans, but they haven’t agreed on all of the parameters.

The bill from Cassidy, Daines, Romney and Rubio differs both from House Democrats’ proposal for a second round of direct payments and from the HEALS Act proposal unveiled by top Senate Republicans earlier this week.

Under House Democrats’ proposal, called the Heroes Act, families would receive payments of $1,200 per non-dependent adult and $1,200 per dependent for up to three dependents. The HEALS Act would provide payments of $1,200 per adult and $500 per dependent.

“As we consider additional relief measures, we should prioritize families by providing them with resources to help with the extra expenses they face as a result of COVID-19,” Romney said.

Lawmakers also do not have unity over who should be eligible for a second round of direct payments. House Democrats would allow both those with Social Security numbers and those with individual tax identification numbers to receive payments. The HEALS Act, as is the case in the CARES Act, would only provide payments to those with work-eligible Social Security numbers, and would generally not provide payments to U.S. citizens who file joint tax returns with spouses that do not have Social Security numbers.

Cassidy, Daines, Romney and Rubio are proposing to only provide payments to those with Social Security numbers, but would allow U.S. citizens married to foreign nationals to get payments. 

The GOP senators’ bill would include the same income limits as the CARES Act and the other proposals for a second round of payments. Under the bill, individuals making up to $75,000 and married couples making up to $150,000 would be eligible for the full amounts, and the amounts would phase out above those thresholds.

This isn’t the first time that Cassidy, Daines, Romney and Rubio have backed legislation that is geared toward families. The senators are also sponsors of bills aimed at providing financial assistance to new parents.

Cassidy and Daines are both up for reelection this year. The non-partisan Cook Political Report rates Daines’s race as “toss-up,” while it rates Cassidy’s seat as “solid Republican.” 

Tags Bill Cassidy Coronavirus coronavirus relief coronavirus stimulus Marco Rubio Mitt Romney Steve Daines
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