- Democrats may propose lowering the income threshold for a third wave of stimulus checks.
- Individuals earning $US50,000 or below would get the full amount.
- Biden’s administration has said it hopes to get payments out the door by mid-March.
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Democrats are floating a new proposal that would restrict the number of people eligible for a third round of direct relief payments, a source familiar with internal discussions told Insider.
The newest version of the plan would provide $US1,400 payments to individuals earning $US50,000 or below. Married couples making $US100,000 or under would receive the full amount.
In addition, heads of households making $US120,000 and under would get the entire cash payment as well.
The person was granted anonymity to discuss ongoing talks but stressed that the plan was not final and it was still subject to change. The Washington Post first reported that Democrats were exploring proposals to adjust the income eligibility for checks.
Over the past few months, President Joe Biden has prioritised the direct cash infusions as the US seeks to recover economically from the coronavirus pandemic. Biden and senior Democrats are pushing to top off the $US600 payments issued in December with an additional $US1,400.
Calls have mounted in Congress, however, to target the latest round of checks toward the Americans most in need of them.
Biden’s rescue package would provide full $US1,400 payments to individuals earning $US75,000 or below and couples making $US150,000 and under. Parents would also receive an extra $US1,400 a child, meaning a family of four could receive $US5,600.
The timing of the stimulus payments depends on when the larger relief packages are enacted. Democrats in both chambers of Congress have kicked off the reconciliation process to prepare the approval of the entire $US1.9 trillion package without any Republican votes.
Biden and other senior White House officials have said they are open to negotiating the income thresholds for direct payments.
“Further targeting means not the size of the check, it means the income level of people who receive the check,” the White House press secretary, Jen Psaki, said Wednesday. “That’s something that is under discussion.”
Democrats are aiming to pass legislation before mid-March, when enhanced unemployment insurance is set to expire for millions of Americans.
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