Trump calls for stimulus deal from hospital bed as second $1,200 checks & additional $600 unemployment hang in balance

The US House of Representatives on Thursday passed a new coronavirus relief bill that could see $1,200 stimulus checks sent out and revive the $600-a-week unemployment bonus.

The vote came two months after the expiration of federally-funded $600 weekly payments to all workers receiving unemployment.

The renewed weekly payments would be retroactive starting September 6 and continue through January 2021.

People making less than $75,000 a year would receive a new $1,200 stimulus, plus $500 for all dependents, be they children or adults.

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell had said he won't support the HEROES Act, or any bill with a price tag higher than $2 trillion, CBS News reported.

But that may change as President Donald Trump tweeted on Saturday, as her undergoes treatment for COVID-19 at Walter Reed military hospital, "OUR GREAT USA WANTS & NEEDS STIMULUS. WORK TOGETHER AND GET IT DONE. Thank you!"

The U.S. continues to experience its worst economic straits since the Great Depression, with unemployment near 20% and an eviction crisis beginning. Meanwhile, the pandemic still claims nearly 1,000 more lives every single day in the U.S.

The HEROES Act, which congressional Democrats tried to pass this year as a $3.4 trillion package that died in the Senate, has been cut down to $2.2 trillion in the version that passed the House.

Aside from stimulus payments, the bill includes $436 billion for state and local governments around the country facing severe budget shortfalls, $120 billion for small business assistance and $75 billion for COVID-19 testing.

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi has reportedly been in negotiations all week with Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin to get the executive branch on board.

But Election Day just a month to go and voting underway in many states, observers predict members of congress will prefer to go back to their districts to campaign instead of working on a legislation to ease the pain of the economic crisis.

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