Americans could really use a second stimulus check: That's something Trump's supporters and critics can actually agree on, as the economy continues to be hobbled by the coronavirus.
According to a recent Money/Morning Consult poll, three in every four Americans who disapprove of President Trump say a second stimulus check is necessary or would be helpful in covering their essential expenses like food over the next three months. And about the same number of Trump supporters agree.
In fact, the stronger the sentiment towards Trump in either direction, the more likely respondents were to say they need a second stimulus check.
And while people who don't like Trump were more likely to say they need the funds, their responses didn't vary much from from the overall, sobering results: Of the 2,200 Americans surveyed last week, 42% said they needed an additional check to pay for essential expenses like food, housing, and bills over the next three months. And 32% said the money would help them meet their basic needs.
This unity among Americans across the political spectrum is no surprise, given the economic fallout from the coronavirus. The U.S. is officially in a recession, according to the National Bureau of Economic Research, and unemployment rates are hitting highs not seen since the Great Depression. As of June 2020, the unemployment rate was 11.1% — triple what it was a year ago — and more than a million Americans continue to file for unemployment benefits every week.
The first stimulus checks, which were up to $1,200 (based on income) plus an additional $500 per dependent, began arriving in April. They helped pay for basic necessities at the time, but have hardly been enough to keep paying the bills all these months later. Of Americans who reported qualifying for the full stimulus check the first time around, 73% say they need a second stimulus check for essential expenses or could really use the help.
President Trump has expressed support of a second wave of stimulus checks. But While Democrats are attempting to widen the net of people receiving checks with plans like the Heroes Act, Senate Republicans are aiming to shrink it in any legislation they pass.
"It will be narrowly crafted, designed to help us where we are a month from now. Not where we were three months ago," said Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell.
Last week, Trump requested lawmakers come up with a $1 trillion package, complete with a second round of checks, and pass it by the time Congress goes on vacation in August. That's similar in size to the $1.3 trillion package reportedly proposed by Senate Republicans.
Correction: This story has been updated to reflect the fact that the Money/Morning Consult poll took place last week, as did President Trump's request to lawmakers for a $1 trillion stimulus package.
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