The Republicans running in the two critical Georgia runoffs that will decide control of the Senate have come out in support of President Trump’s push to increase stimulus checks from $600 to $2,000, they announced Tuesday.
Sens. Kelly Loeffler (R-Ga.) and David Perdue (R-Ga.) praised the commander-in-chief’s public call for Congress to up the value of direct payments in separate Fox News appearances.
Asked about Trump’s change in position, Perdue told the network he was “delighted” to be siding with the president on the issue.
“I think with the vaccine coming, I think this is absolutely appropriate, so I fully support what the president’s doing right now,” the Georgia senator told the network.
Shortly after his appearance he took to Twitter to reiterate his support for the new check values, writing “President @realdonaldtrump is right — I support this push for $2,000 in direct relief for the American people.”
Loeffler was first asked about her position on the president’s $2,000 check effort during her interview with Fox early Tuesday.
“I’ve stood by the president 100% of the time. I’m proud to do that. And I’ve said absolutely we need to get relief to Americans now,” the Georgia Republican said, adding, “I will support [the effort].”
In a tweet posted hours later, she referenced the president’s call for bigger checks directly, writing, “I agree with @realDonaldTrump — we need to deliver $2,000 direct relief checks to the American people.”
Loeffler and Perdue had spent weeks touting their support for the bipartisan package and $600 checks in campaign ads and stump speeches across the state, creating a potentially thorny situation for them when the president called that number a “disgrace.”
Last Tuesday, Trump slammed the bipartisan relief bill and told congressional lawmakers to amend it and “increase the ridiculously low $600 to $2,000 or $4,000 for a couple,” while suggesting he would torpedo it if the changes weren’t made.
Loeffler and Perdue’s respective Democratic opponents, the Rev. Raphael Warnock and Jon Ossoff, jumped on the change, stating their agreement with the president on $2,000 checks.
In response, Loeffler said she would consider supporting a change to the value of direct payments if it “repurposes wasteful spending.”
A statement from the two Georgia Republicans released Sunday said there is still “a great deal” of work to be done to bring relief to Americans — a possible acknowledgment of the president’s displeasure at the final check value.
Trump announced that he had signed the measure on Sunday, but warned that he would ask for millions of dollars of spending to be removed from the bill.
“I will sign the Omnibus and Covid package with a strong message that makes clear to Congress that wasteful items need to be removed,” he said.