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Joe Biden says he's willing to adjust income thresholds for stimulus checks in the new relief package

President Joe Biden. Jim Watson/AFP via Getty Images
    Joe Biden on Monday seemed willing to negotiate an aspect of the new coronavirus relief package.
    He said there was "legitimate reason" to question the income thresholds for direct payments.
    He also didn't rule out using reconciliation but said "time is of the essence" in negotiations.
    Visit Business Insider's homepage for more stories.
President Joe Biden on Monday said he was open to altering the income thresholds for a fresh wave of direct payments to Americans, a key demand among some moderate senators reluctant to back his coronavirus rescue package.
"There's legitimate reason for people to say: 'Do you have the lines drawn the exact right way? Should it go to anybody making over X number of dollars or why?'" Biden said at a press conference. "I'm open to negotiate those things."
Biden said he included more stimulus checks in his $1.9 trillion proposal because they drew support from Democrats and some Republicans last year. His predecessor, President Donald Trump, demanded a higher cash amount in a frenzied last-minute push in December.
Biden said he was hesitant to "cherry-pick" provisions that could be made into a smaller emergency-spending plan, saying they go "hand in glove." He insisted that "time is of the essence."
The remarks indicate Biden is willing to modify elements of his rescue package to garner GOP support, though he didn't delve into more specifics on the parameters for a third wave of payments. His plan includes a provision for $1,400 direct payments, bringing to $2,000 the total recent amount for many recipients after a round of $600 payments was sent out in December.
Earlier last year, Congress passed a pandemic relief package that included $1,200 direct payments. Individuals earning up to $75,000 qualified for the full amount, which decreased until the cutoff at $99,000. Married couples making up to $150,000 also received the federal payment.


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