The proposal consisted of increasing the amount of aid from $ 600 to $ 2,000
The leader of the Republican majority in the United States Senate, Mitch McConnell, blocked on Tuesday a proposal for increase direct checks to citizens from $ 600 to $ 2,000, included in the economic stimulus package, contradicting the president of the country, Donald Trump, and members of his own caucus.
In a speech to the chamber, McConnell recalled that Trump on Sunday signed the bailout, approved last week by both houses of Congress, worth more than 900,000 million dollars, which included direct transfers of $ 600 to the most vulnerable taxpayers.
For five days, Trump blocked the signing of the measure, considering that the amount of 600 dollars was not enough and demanded that legislators increase that amount, although he finally agreed on Sunday.
Republicans refuse to increase that amount because they believe that it would skyrocket the budget deficit. On Monday, the Democrat-controlled Lower House approved the increase with the backing of lawmakers from both parties.
McConnell noted that “during this process the President has highlighted three additional issues of national significance that he would like Congress to address together: The first, as he explained, the President would like a increased direct financial support for American households “.
“The second is the increasing disposition of both parties of the chamber to at least reassess the special legal protections granted to tech companies …, including the ways in which they benefit some of the most prosperous and powerful big tech firms, “he said.
Finally, McConnell cited investigations into alleged electoral fraud, alleged by Trump, without offering evidence.
“These are three important issues that the president has linked. This week, the Senate will begin the process to focus on these three priorities,” he said, without giving more details.
After McConnell finished, the leader of the Democratic minority in the Upper House, Chuck Schumer, requested that the chamber study the proposal of increase the amount of stimulus checks and to vote for it, to which the Republican objected without comment.
“There is a big difference when you say you support the $ 2,000 checks and fight to make them law,” warned Schumer, who asked Republican senators if they will go against the Lower House, Senate Democrats and its own president.
More and more conservatives have joined the calls for an increase in the amount of direct deposits to be approvedAmong them are the senators from Georgia, David Perdue and Kelly Loeffler, who are at stake for their reelection on January 5 in a special vote in this state, in which the majority that will govern the national Senate will be decided.
On the other hand, McConnell set for tomorrow, Wednesday, the vote in the Upper House on Trump’s veto to the bill containing the annual defense budget, after the Lower House voted on Monday to annul the president’s blockade.
“Today the Senate will set a final vote for tomorrow, Wednesday, for this chamber to follow the matter. Soon this important legislation will be approved as law,” said McConnell, who urged his colleagues on the bench in endorse defense legislation, which, if produced, would be the first time that Congress overrides a presidential veto during Trump’s term.