The House of Representatives Monday voted to increase to $2,000 from $600 stimulus checks to be sent to qualified Americans and to override president Donald Trump's veto of the $740 billion National Defense Authorization Act.
Democrats, who control the House, last week promised to do this. They were in an odd position where they both opposed and supported president Donald Trump. They backed Trump's demand for $2,000 in stimulus per person but stoutly opposed his veto of the NDAA.
By a vote of 275 to 134, the House Monday passed the Caring for Americans with Supplemental Help Act. The legislation increases the amount of direct payments included in the $900 billion stimulus deal to $2,000 from $600. It also expands the additional bonus for dependents from each dependent under 17 to each dependent of any age.
"The president of the United States has put this forth as something that he wants to see and part of his signing the legislation yesterday," said House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) on the House floor before Monday's vote.
"I hope that view will be shared by the Republicans in the Senate."
Democrats, who sided with Trump, forced House Republicans to decide whether or not to defy the president. In the end, 130 House Republican Party members voted against the legislation increasing the stimulus amount.
The bill now heads to the Republican-controlled Senate. Senate Republicans have for months opposed more stimulus spending to keep the federal deficit in check.
Minority leader Sen. Chuck Schumer (D-NY) Monday said he planned to quickly pass the legislation in the Senate by requesting a unanimous consent agreement. This can be blocked by any senator.
"Following the strong bipartisan vote in the House, tomorrow I will move to pass the legislation in the Senate to quickly deliver Americans with $2,000 emergency checks," said Schumer.
"Every Senate Democrat is for this much-needed increase in emergency financial relief, which can be approved tomorrow if no Republican blocks it - there is no good reason for Senate Republicans to stand in the way."
The House's vote Monday to override Trump's veto of the defense act is a rebuke for Trump. The annual legislation, which has always been approved for the past 59 years, initially passed both the House and Senate with veto-proof majorities.
The bill now heads to the Senate for a veto override which majority leader Sen. Mitch McConnell (R-KY) has promised.
Trump vetoed the defense act because it doesn't include a repeal of a law protecting internet companies from liability for what is posted on their websites by third parties.