Biden limits eligibility for stimulus payments under pressure from moderate Senate Democrats


Senate Parliamentarian Elizabeth MacDonough said the provision could not be included since the legislation was being considered under a procedure known as reconciliation, which prevents a filibuster and allows the bill to pass by majority vote.

While some Democrats are still pushing to include a mandatory minimum wage hike to $15 per hour, the version of the bill that's now in the Senate no longer has the wage increase - the result of a procedural ruling last week that said the issue can not be part of the stimulus bill. "But the American people are overwhelmingly in support of this legislation". Biden will speak by phone Tuesday afternoon with Senate Democrats about the plan, the White House said.

She said she would hope to redirect the savings from that change toward other needs, such as hospitals. The previously passed House bill said the checks of $1,400 per person would go to individual taxpayers earning between $75,000 and $100,000.

Centrist Senate Democrats had initially pushed for even more aggressive restrictions on the stimulus payments.

So how much will I get now?

Sens. Joe Manchin III of West Virginia and Jeanne Shaheen of New Hampshire are among Democrats who said they are open to extending unemployment benefits at their current $300-per-week boost rather than the House bill's $400-per-week bump through the end of August.

The relief package would extend enhanced federal unemployment benefits, which expire March 14, and increase the weekly amount to $400. "It was more just to hear from President Biden telling us how important it is that we get this done".

Republicans and budget watchdogs say that while the House Democrats' package contains many worthy items, a good chunk of the spending has little to do with COVID-19 relief specifically.

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"It will be a real problem if this gets undermined in the Senate", said Jayapal.

Freshman progressive Democratic Rep. Jamaal Bowman of NY told CNN, "I don't know yet", when asked if he was prepared to withhold his vote on the final version of the Covid relief package if a $15 minimum wage provision were not included.

Attention has focused on Senate moderates who have voiced skepticism about various elements of the bill. "And that's what we're working to do".

But it is not clear that McConnell can replicate the monolithic party unity on display last Saturday, when the House of Representatives approved the bill with all Republicans in opposition.

Senators are gearing up to vote on the package, which is expected to hit the Senate floor as early as this week.

The Senate can not simply pass the House bill. It takes a simple majority vote to pass a reconciliation bill, meaning the chamber's 48 Democrats and two independents can do it on their own, with a tie-breaking assist from Vice President Kamala Harris.

As the New York Times reported, "the change in the upper limit being discussed in the Senate, if adopted, would mean that some people who got a check during the Trump administration would not get one under Mr. Biden".

"I oppose that. I don't know if it will prevail, but I'm for $400", said Sen.