Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., walks to open up the Senate floor at the U.S. Capitol on Dec. 16, 2020, in Washington, D.C. (Tasos Katopodis/Getty Images/TNS)

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., walks to open up the Senate floor at the U.S. Capitol on Dec. 16, 2020, in Washington, D.C. (Tasos Katopodis/Getty Images/TNS)

McConnell rules out passing House bill on $2,000 relief payments

Erik Wasson

Bloomberg News

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell on Wednesday closed off chances that the Senate would pass anytime soon a House bill that would give most Americans $2,000 stimulus payments.

The Kentucky Republican said the House legislation, approved in a bipartisan vote Monday, “has no realistic path” to quick passage in the Senate and that it falls short of the demands of President Donald Trump. He again blocked an attempt by Democratic leader Chuck Schumer to adopt the House bill to increase the payments to $2,000 from the $600 by unanimous consent.

The Senate instead will work on combining the stimulus payments with measures on election integrity and rolling back social media liability protections, he said. That responds to all three issues Trump has said he wants, but a bill combining them likely will alienate enough senators in both parties to leave prospects for bigger stimulus payments dead in the Senate.

“The Senate is not going to be bullied into rushing out more borrowed money into the hands of the Democrats’ rich friends who don’t need the help,” McConnell said. The House bill would raise the income cutoff to receive a payment.

The clash over the payments also is entangling another piece of year-end business in the Senate — a vote to override Trump’s veto of a crucial $740.5 billion defense policy bill. Sens. Bernie Sanders and Ed Markey said they will continue to delay the defense legislation vote unless McConnell relents and allows a vote on a standalone bill on the bigger stimulus checks.

“We are saying to Mitch McConnell, to allow the United States Senate to do what it’s supposed to do, and that is the vote,” Sanders told reporters. “The House passed the bill, it’s over here right now. Do you want to vote against it? Then vote against it.”

Pennsylvania Republican Sen. Pat Toomey later blocked an attempt by Sanders to call up the House bill for a roll call vote.

For more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.com

CoronavirusDonald TrumpPolitics

If you find our journalism valuable and relevant, please consider joining our Examiner membership program.
Find out more at www.sfexaminer.com/join/

Just Posted

Syd Mandelbaum created the home run tracker, which revolutionized statistics in major league sports. (Courtesy photo)
Home run tracker, with roots at Candlestick Park, marks 30 years

When Giants first baseman Brandon Belt slugged a solo home run in… Continue reading

Talika Fletcher, sister of Roger Allen, is consoled at a vigil to honor her brother, who was killed by Daly City Police on April 7, on Wednesday, April 14, 2021. (Kevin N. Hume/S.F. Examiner)
Supporters march for SF man killed by Daly City police

Struggle over fake gun ends in shooting of 44-year-old Roger Allen, DA says

Curfews on indoor dining have been lifted as The City continues to reopen business. (Kevin N. Hume/S.F. Examiner)
City to allow expanded indoor dining, limited indoor concerts and small conferences

With new COVID-19 cases remaining stable, San Francisco will continue to expand… Continue reading

Johnny Cueto P was the starting pitcher for the San Francisco Giants against the Cinnanti Reds, Wednesday. (Sebastian Miño-Bucheli/Special to the S.F. Examiner)
Cueto leaves with injury as Giants take series from Reds

A latissimus dorsi injury to Johnny Cueto cast a dark cloud over… Continue reading

Tenants’ rights laws are often mysterious and written in language that confuses. (Shutterstock)
It’s not a good time to be a bad landlord

Tenant Relief Act, at last, is one positive thing for renters

Most Read