Trump Supports Bigger Direct Coronavirus Relief Payments to Americans

President Donald Trump arrives on stage to speak at a campaign rally at the BOK Center, Saturday, June 20, 2020, in Tulsa, Okla. (AP Photo/Evan Vucci)
AP Photo/Evan Vucci

President Donald Trump said Wednesday that he supports another round of direct payments to Americans — and that he would support bigger payments than the Democrats.

“I do. I support it. But it has to be done properly,” Trump said in an interview with Fox Business Network’s Blake Berman.“I support actually larger numbers than the Democrats.”

Democrats have been pushing for another round of $1,200 payments. Trump appeared to indicate he would like a larger amount in the next round.

Trump also said he wanted to fix the federal government’s enhancement to state unemployment benefits. The Treasury has been kicking in an extra $600 a week to unemployment benefits. As a result, a large portion of the jobless collect more in benefits than they earned on the job. Typically, unemployment pays just a fraction of a worker’s former wages, providing an incentive to rejoin the workforce.

“We had something where they wanted where it gave you a disincentive to work last time,” Trump said. “We want to create a very great incentive to work. So we’re working on that, and I’m sure it’ll all come together.”

Administration officials have discussed ending the enhancement or capping it so that it does not exceed pre-coronavirus layoff wages. Some officials have explored the idea of giving workers a “back to work bonus” to overcome the disincentive created by the extra benefits.

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