COVID-19 Updates

(Photo by Chris Hondros/Getty Images)

Last week, President Trump and Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin discussed an economic stimulus that would entail sending checks for $1,000 to Americans. Now, understandably, people are wondering exactly how this will work.

On Thursday (March 19), the White House and Congress attempted to share details of the plan, negotiating over the size and scope of direct payments to millions of people as well as aid for companies facing devastation during the coronavirus pandemic.

According to the New York Times, Senate Republicans unveiled a package that would provide hundreds of billions of dollars in loans to big corporations and small businesses, large corporate tax cuts and checks of up to $1,200 for taxpayers. However, the plan would place limits on a paid-leave program enacted this week in response to the crisis. Democrats have pressed for more generous paid-leave benefits and targeting help to workers and families rather than large corporations.

The Republican plan proposes to send checks as large as $1,200 per adult to individuals earning less than $99,000 per year. According to the Times, “the payments would phase in for earners up to $75,000 — meaning lower earners would get smaller checks — and then phase out again at $99,000.” Those who did not earn enough to pay income tax would receive $600 checks.

The Times notes that the proposal is different from one pitched on Thursday by Mnuchin, who said the administration wanted to send two waves of $1,000 checks to every American, one in April and one in May should the crisis persist. That plan said that the payments would be $1,000 per adult and $500 per child, so that a family of two parents and two children would receive $3,000, with the goal to distribute that money out in three weeks. The plan also is to get those families another $3,000 six weeks later if the national emergency still exists.

At Friday’s press conference (3/20) President Trump said, in regards to the thousand dollar checks, that, “I want to get workers money,” but didn’t elaborate any further.

On Monday, Steven Mnuchin vowed that the Trump administration and lawmakers on Capitol Hill are “going to get this done,” according to Fox News. Mnuchin spoke to reporters on Monday after meeting with Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y. When asked when he expected to have a final agreement with both Senate Republicans and Democrats, Mnuchin said: “As fast as we can.”