Schumer Floor Remarks In Support Of $1200 Checks

December 18, 2020

Washington, D.C. — Senate Democratic Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) today spoke on the Senate floor regarding his support of a proposal to send $1200 dollar checks to Americans in need due to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic. Senator Ron Johnson (R-WI) objected to the proposal. Below are Senator Schumer’s remarks:

I want to join my friend Senator Sanders to support his amendment to give $1,200 in direct financial support to the American people in the year-end emergency relief bill.

Now this effort should not subtract from any other program already in the bill, like enhanced unemployment, aid to small businesses, education, health care, or any other provision. We don’t need to offset the cost or cut from elsewhere in the bill to make sure the stimulus checks are $1,200 for each adult, and then money for children and others—as he will elaborate. Much of the money will go back into the economy anyway.

The reason for the amendment is simple. Over the course of this pandemic, working Americans have taken it on the chin.

Millions have lost their jobs through no fault of their own. Twenty-six million have had trouble putting food on the table in the last five weeks. Bread lines stretching down American highways. 12 million Americans will owe an average of $6,000 in rent and mortgage.

We have an opportunity in this emergency relief bill to give financial aid directly, directly, to those Americans.

It could mean the difference between Americans paying the rent, or not, affording groceries, or not. The difference between hanging on until the vaccine helps our country get back to normal.

Now, The only objection we’ve heard is this will add too much to the deficit. That’s why a Republican Senator rejected to a similar request earlier today – to push a baseless agenda of austerity.

Please. By now, Republican objections over the debt and deficit are comical. They added nearly $2 trillion to the debt for a massive tax cut for corporations and the wealthy—and that was during a steady economy.

But now that the economy is on life support, Americans are queueing up on bread lines and filing for unemployment, and just as a Democratic President is about to take office, all of the sudden the deficit-scolds are back.

It’s ludicrous—ludicrous. Chairman Powell of the Federal Reserve insisted that “the risk of overdoing it is less than the risk of underdoing it.”

The quickest way to get money into the pockets of the American people is to send some of their tax dollars right back where they came from.

So let’s step up to the plate deliver $1,200 survival checks to millions of Americans before the holidays. I support Sen. Sanders request fully and I hope the Senate will consent.