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Lindsay Graham slammed Mitch McConnell for delaying $2,000 stimulus payments: 'Going from $600 to $2,000 doesn't make you a socialist'

Yelena Dzhanova
·2 min read
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  • Sen. Lindsey Graham on Friday urged Congress to seriously consider giving Americans $2,000 checks, an idea that's been rejected by Senate Republicans multiple times.

  • In a Thursday floor session, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell said increasing stimulus checks from $600 to $2,000 would be "socialism for the rich."

  • Graham disagreed with McConnell's characterization, saying, "Going from $600 to $2,000 doesn't make you a socialist."

  • Visit Business Insider's homepage for more stories.

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Sen. Lindsay Graham on Friday urged the Republican-led Senate to avoid delaying passing a bill that includes $2,000 direct checks to Americans, a move that's been shut down by the top leaders in the upper chamber.

In a Thursday floor session, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell said increasing stimulus checks from $600 to $2,000 would be "socialism for the rich."

"Borrowing from our grandkids to do socialism for rich people is a terrible way to get help to families who actually need it," he said.

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McConnell's characterization struck Graham, who pushed back against it in a tweet Friday.

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"With all due respect to my Republican colleagues, a $2k direct payment for individuals and families who are struggling is not socialism," Graham said. "In my view, it is necessary in the times in which we live."

"The country is being overwhelmed by #COVID, hospitals are full, and business are hanging by a thread. Direct payments may not be the most efficient way to help people in need but, given the situation we face are extremely necessary," he continued.

In December, after monthslong negotiation and delays, lawmakers finally reached a deal on another coronavirus stimulus package. It came with $600 direct checks for taxpayers, in an effort to offset some of the financial devastation brought on by the coronavirus pandemic. This was the second relief package since March, when President Donald Trump signed a bill that included $1,200 direct payments to Americans.

lindsey graham
Lindsey Graham. Getty

Since the second bill, Trump has urged Congress to come to an agreement that includes $2,000 checks for Americans. House Democrats immediately pounced on the suggestion, but McConnell has repeatedly shut it down. Friday became the fourth day in a row that Senate Republicans, led by McConnell, blocked the House-passed bill that includes $2,000 checks.

"Going from $600 to $2,000 doesn't make you a socialist," Graham said in a tweet. "Mr. President, keep fighting for the American people who are suffering. Insist on a standalone vote.

The White House did not immediately respond to a request for comment from Business Insider.

Read the original article on Business Insider