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House fails to pass measure to increase stimulus checks to $2,000

House Democrats tried to quickly pass the bill by a unanimous consent request Thursday morning, but Republicans rejected the move, leaving the future of the $900 billion stimulus package — and whether any changes will be added to it — in doubt. That stimulus package was attached to a spending bill for the entire federal government, and a deadline for government funding expires Monday at midnight.

Democrats will now move to pass the bill on the floor with a full up-or-down vote on December 28, Speaker Nancy Pelosi announced.

“Hopefully by then the President will have already signed the bipartisan and bicameral legislation to keep government open and to deliver coronavirus relief,” Pelosi said in a statement.

Earlier this week, Congress passed the massive Covid relief bill, which included up to $600 payments to all Americans making under certain income levels. Single people who earn up to $75,000 would receive the full $600 direct payment, and couples earning up to $150,000 would receive $1,200. But on Tuesday, Trump signaled he wouldn’t sign the bill if Congress doesn’t amend the legislation and raise the “ridiculously low” $600 stimulus checks to $2,000 for individuals or $4,000 per couple.

“If the President is serious about the $2,000 direct payments, he must call on House Republicans to end their obstruction,” Pelosi said.

Republicans countered the Democratic effort today with a proposal to strip out a piece of the spending package that included foreign aid — an area Trump attacked after Congress cleared the bill. Those provisions, however, were largely in line with Trump’s own budget request and were supported by the vast majority of Republicans. That effort was rejected by Democrats.

This story is breaking and will be updated.


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