On March 10, a group of Democrats submitted legislation to deliver more stimulus funds to Americans. These payments, like those approved by the American Rescue Plan Act in 2021, are expected to be made straight into Americans’ bank accounts. The funds would be distributed quarterly in order to assist consumers in dealing with rising petrol prices.
If This Law Is Passed, Americans Will Receive Extra Stimulus Funds
Rep. Ro Khanna of California and Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse of Rhode Island submitted legislation to increase stimulus funding on March 10. Senators Bernie Sanders, Elizabeth Warren, Michael Bennet, and Sherrod Brown have all signed on as cosponsors.
The proposed legislation would levy a new tax on huge oil firms. The tax would be equivalent to half of the difference between the current price of a barrel of oil and the average price of a barrel of oil between 2015 and 2019. The funds raised would subsequently be used to support stimulus payments.
Individual taxpayers with incomes under $75,000 and married joint filers with incomes under $150,000 would be eligible for stimulus funds. The payments would be roughly $240 per year for single taxpayers and $360 per year for married joint filers based on current prices.
The law is intended to address fast-rising gas costs; the average price per gallon hit $4.31 on the day the bill was introduced, and price hikes are projected to continue, with a new restriction on Russian oil imports in reaction to Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.
Regardless of the international uncertainties, the bill’s authors blame the price rises on oil firms willingly hiking prices to drive their recent record profits. According to Rep. Khanna, the aim is that oil corporations would respond to the increased levy by lowering fuel prices.
“The most important thing is that it will save everyone money,” she stated. “If you’re big oil, you’re not going to want to pay this tax, therefore you’re going to be willing to cut prices.”
Is It Possible That the New Stimulus Measure Will Be Passed?
Despite the support of major Democratic congressmen and senators, the chances of this new stimulus package becoming law are slim. Republicans voted against the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, which approved last year’s stimulus payouts. Right-wing MPs have often opposed tax increases, so they are unlikely to approve this one.
Democrats would require full support from members of their own party to enact legislation if Republicans were not on board. If a Republican filibuster prevents the measure from moving forward, they will have to employ a procedural move known as reconciliation.
Some of the more conservative legislators on the left have been hesitant to grant further stimulus assistance through reconciliation in recent months, and hence are unlikely to support this new approach.
Nonetheless, with the economy still in upheaval and prices rising, governments may take some action to assist – and this law provides one possible answer.
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