Trump Says U.S. Senate Has A “Death Wish”

( President Donald Trump is not at all happy with Republicans in the Senate.

Despite signing the latest coronavirus economic relief package, Trump has urged lawmakers to increase direct stimulus payments to Americans. The package included $600 checks per individual, up to a certain income level, but the president wants that number to increase to $2,000.

The House of Representatives passed a measure earlier this week that would do just that. The bill has been sent to the Senate, but Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell blocked that measure from gaining a vote in his chamber on Tuesday.

Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer attempted to get the House bill passed by unanimous consent Tuesday, which would have streamlined the approval of the $2,000 stimulus checks. McConnell blocked that attempt, though, insisting instead that the increase in stimulus checks be part of a separate bill that included two other priorities.

Following that decision, the president took to Twitter to blast his fellow Republicans. He tweeted:

“Unless Republicans have a death wish, and it is also the right thing to do, they must approve the $2000 payments ASAP. $600 IS NOT ENOUGH! Also, get rid of Section 230 — Don’t let Big Tech steal our Country, and don’t let the Democrats steal the Presidential Election. Get tough!”

The issue of increased stimulus payments seems to have divided Republicans in the Senate. The two incumbent senators running for re-election in Georgia’s January runoffs both took to Twitter to voice their support for the increase in payments.

David Perdue wrote:

“President @realdonaldtrump is right — I support this push for $2,000 in direct relief for the American people.”

Kelly Loeffler wrote:

“I agree with @realDonaldTrump — we need to deliver $2,000 direct relief checks to the American people.”

Missouri Republican Senator Josh Hawley re-tweeted those posts and added a comment: “We’ve got the votes. Let’s vote today.”

While there seems to be support for the increased payments among Senate Republicans, leadership in the party isn’t in favor of doing it on its own. McConnell said the House’s version of the bill has “no realistic path to quickly pass the Senate.”

He pointed out that what Democrats had passed in the House was not what President Trump had fully requested. McConnell explained:

“The Senate is not going to be bullied into rushing out more borrowed money into the hands of Democrats’ rich friends who don’t need help.”

McConnell said he would only bring a vote to the Senate floor for a bill that includes an increase to the direct stimulus payments as well as a repeal of Section 230 liability protections for big tech companies and a full investigation into possible voter fraud.

He said:

“The Senate is not going to split apart the three issues that President Trump linked together.”

On Tuesday, McConnell introduced a bill that would do just that. The president made clear in his tweet that those were his priorities, but he didn’t say they necessary had to be linked together.