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ICYMI: Rubio to Biden: Let’s Get $2K Payments Done Now

Jan 26, 2021 | Press Releases

By U.S. Senator Marco Rubio (R-FL)
January 26, 2021
Real Clear Politics
Last week, President Biden began his term in office with an inauguration speech emphasizing the need for unity in our politics. It was an appropriate note for the address.
Biden now has a golden opportunity to deliver on that promise: calling on the House and Senate to pass an increase in economic impact payments to Americans struggling due to the pandemic from $600 to $2,000. 

Democrats in the House and Senate are already divided on the best path forward because they recognize a huge, unwieldy bill is unlikely to pass quickly. Any bill packed with controversial left-wing provisions will lack the bipartisan support President Biden hopes to achieve. Nonetheless, some Democrats have discussed the potential of using a procedural move called “reconciliation” to pass a bill with zero Republican support.
Even then, this stunt would delay relief for months, leaving millions of struggling Americans without additional assistance as their politicians scheme and divide. As a result, some House Democrats have floated the idea of a slimmed-down version that would focus on increasing direct payments and ensuring the Biden administration has the funds necessary to distribute the COVID-19 vaccines.
That is an approach I support, and one I am confident many of my Republican colleagues would as well.

I know all too well the consequences of politicians exploiting popular, critical legislation as leverage to secure passage for policies that cannot pass on their own. We saw it earlier in the pandemic, when Senate Democrats repeatedly blocked additional funding for small businesses via the Paycheck Protection Program for months on end. We cannot allow direct payments to the American people in this extraordinary time to become bogged down in Washington’s political games. 

I am not prepared to allow that American Dream to wither away. I am sure that President Biden would say the same, which is why he should seize this moment of unity by pushing congressional Democrats to move forward immediately with a targeted relief bill. At a time when Americans desperately need it, we must recognize the positive message it would send to our nation if our parties came together to expand our relief payments to $2,000 with a straightforward, bipartisan bill. Let’s get it done, Mr. President.