Indiana’s two senators – Todd Young and Mike Braun – voted against a budget resolution that clears the way for a new round of stimulus. President Biden and Senate Democrats have called for $1,400 survival checks.
The bill passed the Senate early Friday morning with unanimous support from Democrats. It garnered no support from Republicans. Vice President Kamala Harris cast a tie-breaking vote in the evenly divided chamber.
Senator Young was among ten Republican senators to meet with President Biden earlier in the week to discuss a less generous Republican counter-proposal that included $1,000 checks instead of the $1,400 checks that Democrats included in the bill that cleared the Senate on Friday.
In addition, Young made clear that he wanted to lower the income cutoff in order to prevent high-income earners from receiving stimulus checks. He also opposed critically-needed funding for cities and states struggling during the pandemic.
“I think I speak for just about every one of my colleagues who don’t believe we should be padding the budgets of profligate state governments so that they might pay for expenditures entirely unrelated to this COVID pandemic,” Young said.
Senator Braun blamed Democrats for his vote. However, Braun was not among the senators who met with Biden.
“It’s incredibly frustrating that President Biden and congressional Democrats have rebuffed attempts by Republicans to work together on a bipartisan economic stimulus package for the American people,” Braun said in a statement.
Both Braun and Young supported a stimulus package in December 2020 that included $600 checks for individuals and extended unemployment benefits, among other items. Critics contended that the December stimulus bill was skimpy.
Meanwhile, progressives – including Senator Bernie Sanders and Representatives Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez of New York and Rashida Tlaib of Michigan – have called for recurring monthly payments until the pandemic and recession are over.