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Biden Yanks Stimulus Payments from 17 Million Americans



By Thomas Neuburger


Joe Biden to rich donors: "Nothing would fundamentally change" if he's elected

—Salon headline, June 19, 2019


Turns out Biden and the Democrats are less generous than Trump. From Erica Werner and Jeff Stein at the Washington Post:

Biden limits eligibility for stimulus payments under pressure from moderate Senate Democrats
President Biden has agreed to narrow eligibility for a new round of $1,400 stimulus payments in his $1.9 trillion coronavirus relief bill, a concession to moderate Senate Democrats as party leaders moved Wednesday to lock down support and finalize the sweeping legislation. Under the new structure, the checks would phase out faster for those at higher income levels, compared to the way the direct payments were structured in Biden’s initial proposal and the version of the bill passed by the House on Saturday. ...
Under the plan for stimulus checks passed by the House, individuals earning up to $75,000 per year and couples making up to $150,000 per year would qualify for the full $1,400 payment. The size of the payments would then begin to scale down before zeroing out for individuals making $100,000 per year and couples making $200,000.
Under the changes agreed to by Biden and Senate Democratic leadership, individuals earning $75,000 per year and couples earning $150,000 would still receive the full $1,400-per-person benefit. However, the benefit would disappear for individuals earning more than $80,000 annually and couples earning more than $160,000.
That means singles making between $80,000 and $100,000 and couples earning between $160,000 and $200,000 would be newly excluded from seeing any benefit under the revised structure Biden agreed to. [emphasis added]

Or, as Ryan Cooper put it at The Week, "Joe Biden just yanked stimulus checks from 17 million Americans."


Issues that remain to be resolved:

  • Will the Senate approve this stripped-down generosity?

  • Will Democratic senators keep the House's $15 minimum wage provision in the Senate bill, or bow to Biden and remove it?

  • Will progressives in the House, when the bill comes back to them, put up the kind of fuss that restores the bill to its House-passed condition, or cave to Party leaders?

  • And if the latter, will we ever learn what progressives traded for their compliance, or just be told to get behind the bill, because Republicans?

(Progressive office-holders always trade for something — they traded their acquiescence to Neera Tanden's nomination for...something. But you have to have access to Party back channels to know what they got for their silence.)



All those questions and more will be answered soon, unless they were answered the day Joe Biden was elected.


The rich got theirs last year. Seems the rest can go pound sand. The rich and the rest. True colors, shining through.

(I've launched a Substack site to greet the post-Trump era. You can get more information here and here. If you decide to sign up — it's free — my thanks to you!)