WASHINGTON (NEXSTAR) — Democrats and Republicans say the president should drop his objections and sign the $900 billion COVID-19 relief package — which is part of an overall government funding bill — before it’s too late.
“Hope! That’s what people need, hope!” Rep. Debbie Dingell, D-Mich., said. “I beg the president to know how many people in this country are scared … hungry,” Dingell said.
House Democrats presented a plan to increase stimulus checks to $2,000 Thursday after the president on Tuesday unexpectedly blasted the package and demanded more money for the direct payments.
House Republicans killed that bill, which needed their unanimous consent to pass during the holiday break.
House Democrats say they’ll try again Monday but insist the president should sign the bill as is for now to help millions of struggling Americans and to avoid a government shutdown.
Republicans introduced a Christmas Eve bill of their own.
“On behalf of the wishes of the president, I asked unanimous consent,” Rep. Rob Wittman, R-Va., said.
The president says the overall government funding bill spends too much on foreign aid.
But Dingell says it’s all money requested by the president.
“What was in those bills, came from the Trump administration,” Dingell said.
Missouri Republican Sen. Roy Blunt agrees and urges the president to sign the bill as is.
“It took a long time to get to where we are. I think reopening that bill would be a mistake,” Blunt said.
Without the president’s signature, the government could run out of money and begin to shut down on Tuesday.
Republicans say it’s unlikely a plan to increase stimulus checks to $2,000 could pass in the Republican-controlled Senate, even if the house passes a bill Monday.