It's not every day that you see Bernie Sanders and Donald Trump agree with each other but 2020 has been a very strange year so we guess anything in possible.
The story behind this is the much talked about and oddly controversial stimulus checks that the USgovernment is due to send to American adults who are struggling financially because of the Covid-19 pandemic.
Although Trump had delayed signing the relief bill, Americans will now begin to receive their $600 checks in the next few days. However, both Trump and Sanders think that the amount should be significantly increased to $2000.
During a passionate speech on the Senate floor on Wednesday, Sanders used huge print outs of Trump tweets calling for American people to receive the $2000 checks. One read "$2000 ASAP!" the other said “Give the people $2000, not $600. They have suffered enough!”
Aiming his anger and Republicans, specifically majority leader Mitch McConnell, Sanders said “We have a very unlikely ally in president Trump. Nobody here has disagreed with Trump more times than I have and yet here is what the leader of the Republican Party said. He says ‘$2000 ASAP.’ So even on this issue, amazingly enough, the President of the United States is right.”
Specifically addressing McConnell, Sanders said: “The majority leader might to get on the phone and talk to working families in Kentucky and find out how they feel about the need for immediate help. I have the strong feeling that the people of Kentucky will respond no differently that the people have remarked in New York.”
On Tuesday the House of Representatives narrowly passed a bill for $2000 but McConnell has refused to allow the Senate a quick vote on the issue effectively blocking a passage of the legislation. McConnell has said that his chamber will ‘not be bullied’ into a vote and dismissed the proposals as a ‘firehose of borrowed money.’
In addition, he did propose two extra measures that might push through the checks. One is repealing Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act and also establishing a commission to investigate Trump’s baseless claims of voter fraud. We can imagine that the president will be a fan of at least one of those.
The stimulus checks to help those struggling during the pandemic has been one of the many issues that have dogged US politics this year. Back in April, there was a delay to American people receiving a $1,200 check because Trump wanted his name printed on every one.