Fourth stimulus check | News summary for 1 November
The chance of a fourth stimulus check for every eligible American, like those issued throughout the covid-19 pandemic, is next to none, with President Biden focused instead on the American Rescue Plan and an enhanced Child Tax Credit. That said, there is a possibility that a more targeted payment could still be made to a certain group of American citizens, and they're pushing for that to happen.
Earlier this month, on 4 October, the Senior Citizens League (SCL) wrote a letter to Congress urging members to send a $1,400 stimulus check to those receiving Social Security benefits.
Have progressives caved to the moderates?
The sounds coming out from progressive Democrats is that they are prepared to vote on both bills, the reconciliation and infrastructure, to get them passed.
Previously, the caucus had said they would only vote on both bills if they travelled together through Congress. While this rhetoric has not changed, the Democrat party is getting closer to finding an agreement that will satisfy most of the party.
Will Senator Manchin accept anything in bills?
Sen. Joe Manchin on Monday refused to sign off on a $1.75 trillion social spending and climate measure at the heart of President Biden’s economic agenda.
Manchin accused the Democratic authors of the ambitious framework of using “shell games and budget gimmicks” to mask “the real cost” of the legislation, which he said could wind up being “twice as high” as advertised if its programs are extended.
He is yet to announce what he would support.
How to update your Child Tax Credit income information
The IRS will send out the fifth round of monthly Child Tax Credit direct payments later this month, with the new round set to go out on 15 November. Tens of millions of families are eligible to receive the financial support, but more households may be able to get the monthly payments if they update their personal details with the IRS promptly.
Will stimulus checks affect Social Security uptake?
Heather Long is a economics reporter at the Washington Post and has shared a graph showing that the number of Americans claiming Social Security payments appears to be tailing off. If individuals are able to delay their first Social Security claim then they will receive a higher monthly payment when they do start to get the money. Long suggests that the influx of cash from stimulus checks may have influenced this trend.
AOC pushes for Social Security expansion
Progressive lawmaker Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez is pushing for a significant expansion of the Social Security support programmes which have been in place for generatiojns. Close to 70 million people receive some form of Social Security benefits, and AOC is looking to broaden the eligibility requirements and to oblige some of the welahtiest Americans to pay more.
Roughly 750,000 paper stimulus checks were sent out on to California residents on Monday, but the CFTB warns that it can take weeks for the payments to arrive. Prior to this batch of payments only 4.5 million of the 9 million stimulus checks had been distributed, meaning that half of eligible residents are yet to receive their money.
We take a look at when the stimulus checks may arrive and how much recipients could stand to get...
WATCH: Manchin outlines reconciliation and national debt position
In a hotly-anticipated public address this afternoon, Sen. Joe Manchin gave the clearest picture yet of his position on the ongoing negotiations regarding the reconiliation package. Manchin's refusal to be bullied on the issue comes shortly after the progressive contingent in the House of Representatives agreed to vote yes on the House bills without receiving any guarantees that Manchin will support the larger package in the Senate.
The White House is hopeful of moving towards a deal on the remainder of President Biden’s huge Build Back Better agenda within the coming days.
Biden has held numerous meetings with lawmakers in an attempt to find a compromise to satisfy his disparate caucus, and to secure the passage of a two-bill, multi-trillion-dollar social safety net and infrastructure package.
Manchin responds to reconciliation bill pressure
Sen. Joe Manchin holds a hugely significant position in the Senate and the moderate senator must be kept onside if President Biden's Build Back Better agenda is to be realised. In recent moments he told a packed room of reporters in the Capitol that is unhappy with the House of Representatives' refusal to vote on the infrastructure proposal, choosing instead to wait until the entirity of the reconciliation package is outlined.
Manchin maintains that this stalemate does not make him more likely to support the more ambitious proposals.
How will the Child Tax Credit extension affect me?
After months of negotiations the White House has confirmed that it is close to securing a deal in Congress regarding the future of President Biden's ambitious Build Back Better legislative agenda. However to keep all 50 members of the Democratic caucus in the Senate on-board, some compromises have had to be made. Transport Secretary Pete Buttigieg outlines how the reduced Child Tax Credit proposals will affect American families.
Experts project unemployment to declined even further in October
The Bureau of Labor Statistics will release the October jobs report Friday and Western Union Business Solutions projects that it will show a continued deline in the unemployment rate.
Hwoever, one important question will be if those looking for a job increased as each month more and more workers seem to be giving up on the job search.
Almost 20% of all seniors, and 40% of all Black seniors specifically, have lost all their teeth, yet President Biden allowed the expansion of Medicare to cover dental services to be cut from the reconciliation bill. Read more about what was removed from the bill in our full coverage.
Child Care subsidies in the final reconciliation bill could leave many children behind
The People's Policy Project took a look at the child care subsidies included in the reconciliation bill and found that over half of Black children in the United States could be excluded. Researchers argue that the structure is flawed, because it would allow states to opt into the program. Based on the reluctance of some states to expand Medicaid, the authors say "children in those states will be effectively excluded from the child care program." This ability for states to turn away federal funds could have a disproportionate impact on Black children and based on their modeling they estimate that "44.6 percent of children end up not receiving any child care benefits, including 56.8 percent of black children."
How could the Child Tax Credit help children and society?
The Center on Budget and Policy Priorities undertook a study to understand the impacts associated with the Child Tax Credit. Some included reducing no-natal mortality, increasing educational outcomes and more. The organization also found that families given around $2,000 in wellfare showed a 14% increase in educational attainment by children.
The Social Security Administration announcing a historic 5.9 percent benefit increase for 2022. Our team will talk you through how to calculate your new benefit amount.
Ride share market has not returned to pre-pandemic pricing
The Wall Street Journal's Nell Henderson reports on why prices have yet to return to their pre-pandemic levels for Lyft and Uber after federal unemployment benefits ended. Both comapnies, and many economists had assuemd that the more generous benefits were keeping people to return to the drivers' seat... now more than a month later it is clear that other factors are contributing to their reluctance.
Were federal unemployment benefits keeping people from finding work?
A new study conducted by researchers at the University of Oregon found that only three percent of workers did not look for a new job because of more generous federal unemployment benefits. These programs ended in September and many experts had assumed that labor participation would increase rapidly... it has not, showing that there may be other structural factors that are keeping workers for reentering. Read the full report.
"The American Rescue Plan was designed to spur rapid recovery & prevent scarring in our economy. Now we have an opportunity to create longterm growth across our economy w/ Build Back Better, lower living costs for American families, & make historic investments in the middle-class".
"One in four Americans can't afford prescriptions"
Bernie Sanders was one of the guests on CNN's State of the Union program this weekend and spoke about the problems that average Americans are having to get affordable medical treatment. "Right now, the pharmaceutical industry is doing everything that it can to make sure that one out of four Americans is unable to afford the prescriptions their doctors write for them. People are dying. The cost of insulin is 10 times more in this country than it is in Canada. As soon as I left this studio I'm going to be going back home to get on the phone to make sure we have it. I'll give you an example, right now the Veterans Administration is paying half, because they negotiate prescription prices - they are paying literally 50% of what Medicare is paying. Does that make any sense to anybody?"
Does that sound acceptable to you at all?
When will the $500 billion infrastructure bill be passed?
The bipartisan infrastructure bill which was a collaborative effort between more than 20 Senators, passed in the Senate in August.
However, Progressive Democrats in the House of Representatives have withheld thier votes until the reconciliation bill which includes many of the popular measures left of of the Senate's bill.
In discussions with George Stephanopoulos yesterday, Transportation Secretary Buttigieg said he was optimistic that the infrastructure bill will be passed this week.
How has the labor market changed since March 2019?
No one could have known in March 2019, that one year later, millions across the United States would have lost their jobs because of the deadly spread of a new virus.
A new tool from the Bureau of Labor Statistics allows states to compare employment levels over the last two years.
California continues to send out $600 Golden State stimulus checks, with a total of 4.5 million residents having received their payment. Read our full coverage for more details on the distribution effort.
AOC pushes for Social Security expansion
Progressive lawmaker Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez is pushes for a significant expansion of the Social Security support programmes which have been in place for generations. Close to 70 million people receive some form of Social Security benefits, and AOC is looking to broaden the eligibility requirements and to oblige some of the wealthiest Americans to pay more.
President Biden announces that Democrats have reached a reconciliation deal
Yesterday, the President announced that his party had reached an agreement over the reconciliation bill that will be passed alongside the infrastructure proposal that was approved in the Senate. Today is expecting to be a busy day on Capital Hill as leaders are expected to bring the proposals to the floor for a vote.
How to update your Child Tax Credit income information
The IRS will send out the fifth round of monthly Child Tax Credit direct payments later this month, with the new round set to go out on 15 November.
Tens of millions of families are eligible to receive the financial support, but more households may be able to get the monthly payments if they update their personal details with the IRS promptly.
The 5.9 percent COLA increase is the highest in forty years due to higher than normal inflation brought on by multiple factors resulting from the covid-19 pandemic.
That inflation has been be knocking a hole in beneficiaries pocket books. The annual boost to monthly payments will help go some way toward keeping seniors and disabled recipients from losing purchasing power. So, when you can expect the increase and how much you could receive?
What aspects of the $3.5 trillion reconciliation bill have been removed?
Various pieces promoted by Sen. Bernie Sanders have been removed from the reconcililation bill in an effort to gain the votes of Senator Joe Manchin and Kyrsten Sinema. This includes a measure to lower the cost of perscription drugs, expanding Medicare to include vision, dental, and hearing services, and more.
Welcome to AS USA's Stimulus Live Blog
Good morning and welcome to our daily live blog for Monday 1 November, as we bring you the latest updates on President Biden's attempts to get his Build Back Better proposals through Congress, plus news on a potential fourth stimulus check, the expanded Child Tax Credit, Social Security benefits, and more.
Today is expected to be another important one on Capital Hill as Democrats make another attempt to bring the infrastructure bill to a vote in the House.