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Stimulus check 2: Treasury secretary urges Congress to pass bill by end of month

Steve Mnuchin stimulus check
(Image credit: Drew Angerer/Getty Images)

As unemployment benefits dwindle and millions of Americans remain uncertain about additional relief payments, Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin is urging Congress to approve a stimulus check 2 by the end of July. 

Mnuchin testified before the House Committee on Small Business on Friday, where he called on lawmakers to push forward the next round of stimulus benefits sooner rather than later, the New York Times reports. He noted that relief should be focused on low- and middle-income families and small businesses and also suggested an extension for the Paycheck Protection Program, especially in the industries that have been affected most by COVID-19. 

Mnuchin’s sense of urgency echoes that of House Democrats, who passed the stalled Heroes Act (which includes additional direct payments to individuals and families) in May. Rep. Alexandra Ocasio-Cortez (D-New York) this week called on Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Kentucky) to “get to work.” 

Stimulus check 2 date (and extra unemployment)

The Senate has indicated that a bill will be presented and debated as early as next week when lawmakers return from recess. McConnell has left the door open for stimulus check 2, though benefits may be reserved for those making less than $40,000 per year. Other senators remain uncertain about additional direct payments. 

Meanwhile, White House economic advisor Larry Kudlow said on Friday that he expects legislation could include additional unemployment insurance, reemployment benefits and a payroll tax holiday. He’s stated in the past that "direct checks are probably going to be part" of the next package, while President Trump has said he supports “larger numbers” for stimulus payments. 

With a number of proposals for stimulus check 2 and a tight timeline between Senate recesses, Americans could see benefits as early as August or have to wait until September (or later). 

What about your first stimulus check? 

Direct payments provided under the Cares Act were released starting earlier this spring, and some stimulus checks may still be trickling out to workers closer to the income cap. If you haven’t received your benefits, check the status via the IRS's Get My Payment app or try to reach a representative at the IRS stimulus check phone number.