Sen. Sherrod Brown: $1,400 stimulus check ‘puts money in pockets’ so get it done fast

Seana Smith
·2 min read

As Democratic lawmakers press forward with President Biden’s $1.9 trillion stimulus package, Sen. Sherrod Brown (D-Ohio) said it’s important to get the deal done, even if "minor changes" are necessary.

One of the minor changes Brown is referring to is the compromise to limit the eligibility for $1,400 stimulus checks. Biden reached a deal this week in an effort to appease centrist Democrats in the Senate who were pushing for more targeted aid.

“If we have to make a few minor changes, then full speed ahead because I want to get it done,” Brown told Yahoo Finance. “We can’t keep waiting. People are hurting. The faster we move, the better.”

Under the new proposal, up to $1,400 in direct payments will only go to individuals earning less than $80,000 and couples earning less than $160,000. Biden’s initial proposal passed by the House last weekend eliminated direct payments for individuals earning $100,000 and couples earning $200,000.

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The move to lower the threshold was opposed by some progressive Democrats because of the number of people who will no longer receive partial payments. About 17 million people, adults and children, who qualified to receive a stimulus payment under the House plan will not receive a payment under the Senate plan, according to an estimate from the Institute of Taxation and Economic Policy. But among the bottom 60% of Americans, both the House and Senate versions of the bill would benefit 100% of adults and children.

Brown stressed getting the bill passed in a timely manner is critical. An estimated 11.4 million people will lose unemployment benefits between March 14 and April 11 if another package is not passed in the coming weeks, according to research by The Century Foundation.

“It puts shots in people's arms, it puts kids back in schools, it puts money in people’s pockets, and it puts workers back to work,” Brown said.

Despite strong opposition from GOP lawmakers and the request by Sen. Ron Johnson (R-Wis.) to read aloud every word of the 628-page bill, Democrats remain focused on getting the bill to Biden before March 14.

“We want to get this bill done. We want to get it passed by Sunday at the latest… and send it to the White House,” Brown said.

Seana Smith anchors Yahoo Finance Live’s 3-5 p.m. ET program. Follow her on Twitter @SeanaNSmith