President Donald Trump’s push for $2,000 COVID-19 relief checks now rests with the Senate after the House voted overwhelmingly to meet the president’s demand to increase the $600 stipends, but Republicans have shown little interest in boosting spending.
The outcome is highly uncertain heading into Tuesday’s session. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell has declined to publicly address how he plans to handle the issue. But Democrats, sharing a rare priority with Trump, have seized on the opportunity to force Republicans into a difficult vote of either backing or defying the outgoing president.
After bipartisan approval by the House, Senate Democratic leader Chuck Schumer warned, “There is no good reason for Senate Republicans to stand in the way.”
“There’s strong support for these $2,000 emergency checks from every corner of the country,” Schumer said in a statement late Monday. He called on McConnell to make sure the Senate helps “meet the needs of American workers and families who are crying out for help.”
Florida Sen. Marco Rubio, a Republican, said he will support the measure if it is voted upon in the Senate.
The House tally was a stunning turn of events. Just days ago, Republicans blocked Trump’s sudden demands for bigger