The Trump Administration Is Pushing for $1,000 Checks to Every American Adult

The Treasury secretary also said the administration would issue another round of checks in six weeks if the crisis is still battering the U.S. economy.
March 19, 2020, 1:52pm
Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin, delivers remarks on the coronavirus relief package after the Senate Republican Policy luncheon in Russell Building on Tuesday, March 17, 2020.

Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said in an interview Thursday morning that the Trump administration is preparing to send $1,000 to every American adult within three weeks of Congress passing its plan.

Mnuchin made the announcement in an interview with Fox Business, saying the checks would be part of the White House’s emergency $1 trillion plan it announced earlier this week. Every adult would receive $1,000, and children would receive $500, meaning a family of five could receive as much as $3,500.

Mnuchin also said the administration would issue another round of checks in six weeks if the crisis is still battering the U.S. economy. It's unclear what the income threshold will be to qualify for the payments.

“As soon as Congress passes this, we get this out in three weeks,” Mnuchin said. “And then, six weeks later, if the president still has a national emergency, we’ll deliver another $3,000.”

It’s so far unclear what the income limit would be, but Senate Republicans said earlier this week that they’d like to model the payments on tax rebates sent out by the Bush administration in 2008, according to the Hill. The income limits for full rebates then were $75,000 for individuals and $150,000 for couples.

The messaging from Mnuchin tracks with the timeline in an internal Treasury department document published by VICE News on Wednesday, which indicates that the administration wants to make $500 billion in direct payments to taxpayers in two installments over the course of April and May.

While Mnuchin admitted that he expects second-quarter growth to be “slow,” the Treasury secretary insisted that the economy would begin to pick up again in the second half of the year, with “gigantic” growth in the 4th quarter.

“We’re going to get out of this quickly,” Mnuchin said.

Cover: UNITED STATES - MARCH 17: Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin, delivers remarks on the coronavirus relief package after the Senate Republican Policy luncheon in Russell Building on Tuesday, March 17, 2020. (Photo By Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call via AP Images)