The Delta variant continues to push up COVID-19 cases across the U.S., and this is having a financial impact on people as well. Thus, people now expect Congress to send more stimulus payments, and this is driving up the support for the coronavirus stimulus check petition that has now gained almost 2.9 million signatures. However, the growing support for the Change.org petition doesn’t seem to be translating into pressure on Congress to send more stimulus checks.
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The Change.org petition, which calls on Congress to send recurring stimulus checks, was launched last year by a Denver restaurant owner Stephanie Bonin. Specifically, the petition asks Congress to send "$2,000 payment for adults and a $1,000 payment for kids immediately, and continuing regular checks for the duration of the crisis."
As of this writing, the petition has 2,895,698 supporters, and is targeting 3,000,000. Once it reaches its goal of 3 million signatures, it will become one of the top signed Change.org petitions.
So far, Congress has sent three stimulus checks since the start of the pandemic. The third round of stimulus checks was approved in March this year. Since then, people have been waiting for more stimulus checks, but lawmakers aren’t supporting such calls.
Previously some lawmakers did talk of sending more stimulus checks, but now, the lawmakers seem to be focused on other stimulus measures.
In July, Representative Ilhan Omar came up with legislation in support of a federal universal basic income system. The legislation proposed a five-year pilot program, where adults making less than $75,000 would get $1,200 per month, as well as $600 for each eligible dependent.
However, Omar’s call for a universal basic income got support from four legislators. These legislators are Jamaal Bowman of New York, Cori Bush of Missouri, Pramila Jayapal of Washington and Dwight Evans of Pennsylvania.
Several Lawmakers Support Recurring Payments As Well
Previously, it was reported that more than 80 Democrats in Congress support giving more stimulus checks this year. In a letter sent on March 30, twenty-one senators urged President Joe Biden to send a fourth round of stimulus checks. The senators noted that the third stimulus check of $1,400 wouldn’t be enough to support low-income families facing financial hardship because of the pandemic.
Separately, more than 50 House Democrats, in a letter, also previously asked Biden to send recurring payments until the pandemic ends. Apart from lawmakers, several economists also came out in support of recurring payments.
In an open letter last year, more than 150 economists, including former chair of the Council of Economic Advisers under the Obama administration, Jason Furman, asked Congress to send recurring direct stimulus payments.
Despite such support for recurring stimulus checks, including from the general public, Democrats, Senators and economists, the Biden administration doesn’t seem keen on sending more stimulus checks. Instead, the Biden administration is focused on infrastructure bills, none of which include direct payments, and the Child Tax Credit, which does provide direct payments to those with children.