On Saturday, the Democratic-controlled House passed a $1.9 trillion economic aid package, which included a $1,400 stimulus check for most Americans.
The massive economic aid package now heads to the U.S. Senate where its passage is uncertain. The point of tension? The inclusion of a provision to raise the minimum wage to $15 per hour, which the parliamentarian of the Senate ruled couldn’t be included in the bill if Democrats are to pass it through the budget reconciliation process. Additionally, moderate Democrats like Sen. Joe Manchin have spoken out against the $15 minimum wage provision.
If the Senate doesn’t move the bill because of the $15 minimum wage provision, it would go back to the House.
But even if the bill gets sent back to the House, Democratic leadership plan to get a bill on President Joe Biden’s desk by March 14—the date when a slew of pandemic unemployment benefits are set to expire.
If Biden ultimately signs a stimulus package before unemployment benefits lapse on March 14, then $1,400 stimulus checks could go out before the end of the month. After the passage of the CARES Act in March 2020, it took the Treasury Department two weeks to start depositing the $1,200 stimulus checks. However, after the next economic aid package passed on Dec. 27, $600 checks started to be deposited on Dec. 30. This go-round, the Treasury Department should be able to stick to that timetable and deliver checks just a few days after passage.
As written in the bill, $1,400 stimulus checks would go to individuals earning up to $75,000, or couples filing jointly with incomes under $150,000. The checks would phase out for individuals with incomes above $100,000, or $200,000 per couple. All income figures are based on adjusted gross income.
Filers would also get $1,400 per dependent—regardless of whether the dependent is an adult or a child.