Here's What You Need to Remember: It currently appears that the IRS and the Treasury Department are in the final weeks of disbursing the remaining stimulus checks, of which only about 15 percent have yet to be sent out. In all, approximately one hundred sixty-four million checks worth $386 billion have landed in bank accounts and mailboxes.
White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki late last week appeared to defend President Joe Biden’s letter that was sent out to millions of Americans who received a $1,400 coronavirus stimulus check under the $1.9 trillion American Rescue Plan.
Like his predecessor former President Donald Trump, similar letter formatting was used to boast about Biden’s role in successfully delivering tens of millions of payments to struggling individuals and families.
“On March 11, 2021, I signed into law the American Rescue Plan, a law that will help vaccinate America and deliver immediate economic relief to hundreds of million Americans, including you,” Biden wrote in the letter sent via the Internal Revenue Service.
“A key part of the American Rescue Plan is direct payments of $1,400 per person for most American households. … This fulfills a promise I made to you, and will help get Americans through the crisis.”
Biden later adds: “When I took office, I promised the American people that help was on the way. The American Rescue Plan makes good on that promise. … I truly believe there's nothing we can’t do as a nation, as long as we do it together.”
Regarding the letter, Psaki told reporters on Friday that it was “pretty standard” and was “not intended to make it about him—it’s about the American people.”
She then added that the letter “should be kept with tax year 2021 records.”
It currently appears that the IRS and the Treasury Department are in the final weeks of disbursing the remaining stimulus checks, of which only about 15 percent have yet to be sent out. In all, approximately one hundred sixty-four million checks worth $386 billion have landed in bank accounts and mailboxes.
As calls for a fourth round of stimulus checks continue to grow, Psaki was asked in an earlier press briefing whether there would indeed be another round to assist American families.
“We’ll see what members of Congress propose, but those are not free,” she said.
Psaki then touted the potential reach and benefits of the expanded child tax credit, which makes millions of families eligible to claim as much as $3,600 per year for a child under the age of six and up to $3,000 for children between six and seventeen.
With this change, a family headed by a couple earning under $150,000—or an individual earning below $75,000—is eligible to receive a $250 or $300 payment every month.
However, if Biden’s highly ambitious American Families Plan ever gets green-lighted, those recurring monthly payments will be extended through the year 2025.
“If passed, the families of tens of millions of children will continue to get regular payments,” Psaki said.
“Obviously, we’re continuing to evaluate what their needs are—to continue to get the pandemic under control, put people back to work, but we think that’s a proposal with a long-term benefit,” she added.
Ethen Kim Lieser is a Minneapolis-based Science and Tech Editor who has held posts at Google, The Korea Herald, Lincoln Journal Star, AsianWeek, and Arirang TV. Follow or contact him on LinkedIn. This article first appeared earlier this week.