- The Washington Times - Tuesday, February 9, 2021

President Biden said Tuesday that he supports House Democrats’ plan to limit who is eligible for the full direct payments of $1,400 in his $1.9 trillion coronavirus relief package.

Mr. Biden said he agreed with the House plan to start phasing out the checks for individuals who make more than $75,000 per year. The full $1,400-per-person benefit would start phasing out for couples earning more than $150,000 per year.

Mr. Biden said he’s fully focused on the coronavirus pandemic and that the U.S. Senate would do its job on the impeachment trial of former President Donald Trump.

“A lot of families are food insecure. They are in trouble. That’s my job,” Mr. Biden said at a meeting at the White House with business leaders. “The Senate has their job — they’re about to begin it. I’m sure they are going to conduct themselves well. That’s all I am going to have to say about impeachment.”

Attendees included Jamie Dimon, chairman and CEO of JPMorgan Chase; Tom Donohue, CEO of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce; Doug McMillon, president and CEO of Walmart; Sonia Syngal, president and CEO of Gap Inc.; and Marvin Ellison, president and CEO of Lowe’s Companies Inc.

Some moderate Democrats, including Sen. Joe Manchin of West Virginia, had talked about reducing the eligibility levels for the full checks to $50,000 for individuals and $100,000 for couples as a way to trim the price tag of the broader package.

Liberals revolted against that idea, saying that it didn’t make sense to cut people off who might have gotten checks under earlier packages that Congress passed and Mr. Trump signed into law.

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