Sen. Josh HawleyJoshua (Josh) David HawleyHillicon Valley: 46 states and FTC file antitrust lawsuits against Facebook | YouTube to remove content that alleges widespread election fraud | European medical agency hit by cyberattack New Senate bill would allow victims to sue websites that host revenge porn, forced sexual acts Senate approves three FEC nominees, restoring commission’s ability to function MORE (R-Mo.) on Thursday introduced legislation to provide a second round of stimulus checks to most Americans as negotiations on a larger coronavirus relief package struggle to reach a breakthrough.
Hawley, who has said he will oppose any deal that doesn’t include another round of direct assistance, said his legislation mirrors a proposal from the March CARES Act that provided a $1,200 check for individuals who made up to $75,000.
“It’s what every single senator has already supported, so there should be no fiddling about ‘oh I don’t know this is different.’ It’s exactly what every senator has voted for once,” Hawley said.
“If the negotiators can’t reach some sort of compromise I will go to the floor next week and I’ll ask for an up or down vote on that,” Hawley added.
Under Senate rules any one senator can go to the floor to ask for a vote, but any one senator can also object and block the vote.
Hawley’s decision to introduce a stand-alone bill comes as lawmakers on both sides of the aisle have pushed for another round of checks to be included in any year-end agreement.
Progressives, including Sen. Bernie SandersBernie SandersNina Turner files paperwork for Ohio congressional run Momentum stalls for COVID-19 relief bill Former Sanders spokesperson: Nina Turner House candidacy ‘very exciting prospect’ for the left MORE (I-Vt.) and Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-CortezAlexandria Ocasio-CortezMegyn Kelly mocks Ocasio-Cortez: ‘She likes to play the victim a lot’ New York City considering online shopping fee amid pandemic DeLauro intends to be ‘strong chair’ as Appropriations leader MORE (D-N.Y.), are also pushing for checks to be included.
Separate proposals from Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnellAddison (Mitch) Mitchell McConnellMembers of Congress should force leadership to hold a COVID-19 relief bill vote On The Money: Momentum stalls for COVID-19 relief bill | Congress barrels toward ‘COVID cliff’ | House passes stopgap bill to avoid government shutdown Senate rejects attempt to block Trump’s UAE arms sale MORE (R-Ky.) and a bipartisan group of lawmakers did not include another round of stimulus checks over concerns that including them would increase the price tag and compromise support for the frameworks.
But Treasury Secretary Steven MnuchinSteven MnuchinOn The Money: Momentum stalls for COVID-19 relief bill | Congress barrels toward ‘COVID cliff’ | House passes stopgap bill to avoid government shutdown Overnight Defense: Biden defends picking retired general for Pentagon head | House passes weeklong stopgap spending bill | Senate rejects effort to block Trump’s UAE arms sale Momentum stalls for COVID-19 relief bill MORE pitched Speaker Nancy PelosiNancy PelosiInspector general told prosecutors VA Secretary Wilkie may have engaged in criminal conduct: report Members of Congress should force leadership to hold a COVID-19 relief bill vote On The Money: Momentum stalls for COVID-19 relief bill | Congress barrels toward ‘COVID cliff’ | House passes stopgap bill to avoid government shutdown MORE (D-Calif.) and GOP leadership on another proposal that would include $600 checks. House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthyKevin Owen McCarthyBiden picks leave Democrats with slimmest House majority in modern history The Hill’s 12:30 Report – Presented by Alibaba – Developments in the stimulus talks McCarthy says Swalwell should be disqualified from Intel Committee following spy report MORE (R-Calif.) told Axios that both he and McConnell supported the proposal.
But there’s opposition within the Republican caucus to another round of stimulus checks and senators have grumbled that congressional leadership, not the administration, should be handling the negotiations at this stage of the game.
Hawley, a potential 2024 contender, urged President Trump during a phone call over the weekend to veto any bill that does not include more stimulus checks.
“I’m continuing to be flummoxed as to why there aren’t any direct payments. Everybody supported this in March. It’s the most useful, helpful and frankly popular aspect. So I told him that, and … I encouraged him to veto it,” Hawley said about his conversation with Trump, which took place as the president was traveling back from Georgia.