â€œYou donâ€™t get everything you want, even if youâ€™re the president of the United States,â€ Sen. Pat Toomey (R-Pa.) said on â€œFox News Sunday.â€
Toomey, who isnâ€™t seeking reelection in 2022, said Trump should sign the legislation and then make his case to Congress for larger stimulus checks.
â€œI understand he wants to be remembered for advocating for big checks, but the danger is heâ€™ll be remembered for chaos and misery and erratic behavior if he allows this to expire,â€ Toomey warned.
Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) called Trumpâ€™s inaction â€œunbelievably cruel,â€ noting the lapsed unemployment benefits and expiring eviction moratorium.
â€œSign the bill, Mr. President, and then immediately, Monday, Tuesday, we can pass a $2,000 direct payment to the working families of this country,â€ Sanders said on ABCâ€™s â€œThis Week.â€
If Trump fails to sign the bill today, Sanders predicted, â€œThe suffering of this country will be immense.â€
More than 18 million Americans have been infected with Covid-19, which has killed 332,000 people in the U.S. And Anthony Fauci, the nationâ€™s top infectious diseases expert, cautioned Sunday that the U.S. could see â€œa surge upon a surgeâ€ of more infections after Christmas and New Yearâ€™s.
Rep. Adam Kinzinger (R-Ill.) lamented that Trump didnâ€™t push for the larger stimulus payments on the front end of negotiations. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin was believed to have been negotiating on behalf of the president. Like Toomey and Sanders, Kinzinger, too, suggested conversations about $2,000 stimulus checks should occur after the president signs the bill.
â€œBecause right now, weâ€™re at a point where people are left out in the dark,â€ he explained on CNNâ€™s â€œState of the Union.â€ â€œBut to play this old switcharoo game, which is just kind of like, I donâ€™t get the point, I donâ€™t understand whatâ€™s being done, why â€” unless itâ€™s just to create chaos and show power and be upset because you lost the election. Otherwise I donâ€™t understand it because this just has to get done. Too many people are relying on this.â€
Reps.-elect Cori Bush (D-Mo.) and Jamaal Bowman (D-N.Y.) endorsed the $2,000 stimulus checks in a joint interview on CNN. Bush called the $600 payments â€œcrumbsâ€ and â€œa slap in the face to people who are suffering.â€
But Bowman argued that the president is simply â€œposturingâ€ after suffering what he said was â€œa malignant narcissist harm by losing the election.â€ â€œAnd now heâ€™s posturing to make himself, to bring himself back as the hero of the American people asking for $2,000,â€ he added.
â€œThe president is the embodiment of everything thatâ€™s wrong with this country,â€ Bowman said. â€œHeâ€™s a privileged person who rose to power as a reality TV star, and now heâ€™s trying to drive this country into chaos. I canâ€™t wait for him to be out of office.â€
Even with the president backing the proposal, itâ€™s unclear $2,000 stimulus checks could pass the Republican-led Senate. Toomey indicated most Republicans wonâ€™t support the measure because itâ€™s â€œterribly untargeted.â€
â€œWhy would we be sending $2,000 to people with a six-figure income whoâ€™ve had no suspension, no reduction of their income at all?â€ he asked. â€œThis money isnâ€™t sitting on a shelf. Weâ€™re gonna print it or weâ€™re gonna borrow it, and I think that the aid should be much, much more targeted. It should be targeted to people whoâ€™ve actually lost their job. Small businesses that are actually in danger of going under. Those are very real categories. The numbers are significant.â€