Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin has reported that the first round of $600 stimulus payments started going out on Tuesday night.
"The United States Treasury has delivered a payment file to the Federal Reserve for Americans' Economic Impact Payments. These payments may begin to arrive in some accounts by direct deposit as early as tonight and will continue into next week," he tweeted.
"Paper checks will begin to be mailed tomorrow."
Under the terms of the recently passed bill, $600 payments will be distributed by direct deposit or check to adults who earned less than $75,000. Couples earning less than $150,000 will receive $1,200 payments. Families with children will also earn $600 for each dependent in their household.
"These payments are an integral part of our commitment to providing vital additional economic relief to the American people during this unprecedented time," Mnuchin said.
The latest set of COVID-19 relief checks arrive after Senator Mitch McConnell blocked a vote for larger $2,000 payouts for American citizens. While McConnell did not specify why he blocked the vote, his decision earned criticism from both sides of the aisle.
"$600 is not enough," President Donald Trump tweeted.
"The Democrats and Republicans in the House have passed that legislation. Who is holding up that distribution to the American people? Mitch McConnell and the Senate Republicans,” Speaker Nancy Pelosi added.
Despite blocking the initial vote for $2,000 stimulus checks, McConnell hinted that he would be willing to package the stimulus increase with the repeal of a tech shield and election-related investigations.
"Those are the three important subjects the President has linked together. This week the Senate will begin a process to bring these three priorities into focus," the Senate Majority Leader stated.
Regardless of his desires, lawmakers remain frustrated as Americans need financial relief. With looming evictions, continued layoffs and rising COVID-19 hospitalizations, larger stimulus checks would be welcomed now more than ever.
"The fastest way to get money into Americans' pockets is to send some of their tax dollars right back from where they came. Two-thousand dollar stimulus checks could mean the difference between American families having groceries for a few extra weeks or going hungry," Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer said.
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