SALT LAKE CITY, Utah — As it turns out, Utah Sen. Mitt Romney is not among a growing number of Republican senators supporting the call for increased $2,000 stimulus checks.
“We can’t just have free money”
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell recently blocked a Democratic effort to unanimously approve a bill the House passed to increase the amount of direct payments to Americans from $600 to $2,000.
Interestingly enough, Romney also opposed the $600 direct payments that were eventually added to the bipartisan aid package approved last week. While he eventually voted for the bill, the payments were not part of the original plan he helped negotiate.
Relieved that this long-awaited, bipartisan emergency #COVID19 legislation has finally been signed into law. Help is now on the way to workers, families, and small businesses across the country who are desperately in need.
— Senator Mitt Romney (@SenatorRomney) December 28, 2020
Romney said he supported stimulus checks at the onset of the coronavirus pandemic, but he argues it no longer is the best way to help most people.
“The economy is showing good signs of life, so we’re not looking for a stimulus. We’re looking to help people in need,” Romney told the Deseret News.
Reasons against $2,000 stimulus payments
Instead, he argues the unemployed, small businesses and rural hospitals are the most in need at this point.
He also cited the national debt as a reason against stimulus checks.
“Someone’s got to pay for that,” Romney said. “We can’t just have free money. There’s got to be taxation. We have to pay interest on the debt.”
Utah Sen. Mike Lee has not shared his opinion yet on increasing direct payments.
— Rep. Chris Stewart (@RepChrisStewart) December 28, 2020
Utah’s Republican Representatives, Chris Stewart and John Curtis, voted against the bill, while Rob Bishop did not vote. Democratic Representative Ben McAdams voted in favor of it.