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Marco Rubio. Image via AP.

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Invoking Donald Trump, Marco Rubio backs House Dems’ $2,000 relief check push

Florida’s Senior Senator wants to put money in your pocket.

Florida’s Senior Senator wants to put money in your pocket, and he’s backing a Democratic bill that just passed the House of Representatives to do it.

U.S. Sen. Marco Rubio issued a statement Monday supporting President Donald Trump‘s call for $2,000 checks to be sent out to each American citizen. However, the timing was notable, coming as it did with the House voting up a bill to fulfill Trump’s vision.

“I agree with the President that millions of working class families are in dire need of additional relief, which is why I support $2,000 in direct payments to Americans struggling due to the pandemic,” Rubio said, before sniping at the Speaker for alleged obstructionism.

“For months, Republicans tried to pass additional relief for workers, families, and small businesses — only to be rejected by Democrats at every turn. Remember, months ago Speaker (Nancy) Pelosi and Democrats rejected the Administration’s previous offer of $1,200 per adult and $1,000 per child. Thankfully, she’s finally stopped holding working families hostage.”

“I share many of my colleagues’ concern about the long-term effects of additional spending, but we cannot ignore the fact that millions of working class families across the nation are still in dire need of relief,” Rubio continued. “Congress should quickly pass legislation to increase direct payments to Americans to $2,000.”

On Sunday, the President signed a $900 billion package that included $600 checks for individuals and $1,200 for families. The signing came after Trump teased a veto of the package because of insufficient funds for individuals and funding of various projects he deemed to be “pork,” despite his own Treasury Secretary being a party to the deal.

“Made many calls and had meetings at Trump International in Palm Beach, Florida. Why would politicians not want to give people $2000, rather than only $600?” he tweeted on Christmas Day. “It wasn’t their fault, it was China. Give our people the money!”

With Minority Leader Chuck Schumer committed to pushing for the legislation Tuesday in the Senate, Rubio’s support could help to strengthen support for the increased payouts.

Not all Republicans, of course, will be on board. Who knows if Majority Leader Mitch McConnell lets it get to the floor? And if it does, the vote could be a poison pill, with some potentially saying no on grounds of larger principle.

Sen. Rick Scott, one of six in the Senate who was down on the COVID-19 relief bill, has sounded the alarm about the recent spending trajectory and its longterm effects, suggesting he won’t be a reliable yes.

“We are not spending money we have in the bank or anticipate we will collect in taxes. Washington doesn’t seem to understand that new spending today will be paid for by increased federal debt and result in a tax increase on families down the road. We have to stop operating this way; there is no excuse for the way Washington treats the American taxpayers. I’ve repeatedly voted against enormous and wasteful spending bills. The easy route is simply to go along as Congress continues to do harm to future generations of Americans, but I will not be a part of it.”

Written By

A.G. Gancarski has been a correspondent for FloridaPolitics.com since 2014. In 2018, he was a finalist for an Association of Alternative Newsweeklies "best political column." He can be reached at AG@FloridaPolitics.com

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