WASHINGTON — As the economic fallout of the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak escalates, U.S. Senators Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH) and Maggie Hassan (D-NH) sent a letter today with a group of Senators led by Michael Bennet (D-CO), Sherrod Brown (D-OH) and Cory Booker (D-NJ) to Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell and Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer outlining a bold new proposal to provide Americans with direct cash payments.

“Over the course of just one week, most of America went from business-as-usual to a virtual shutdown. Workers have seen their hours cut or eliminated entirely, and millions of American families are assessing how they will weather a potentially long-lasting economic paralysis,” wrote the Senators in the letter.

“We must provide direct cash support to the American workers and families who need it most – to help them purchase essentials; pay the rent, mortgage, and bills; and otherwise weather the coming weeks and months.”

In the letter, the Senators outline a proposal to quickly provide $2,000 in support to every adult, child (or non-child dependent), and recipient of Social Security, Veterans Affairs (VA) benefits, and Supplemental Security Income (SSI). The proposal calls for additional cash payments should the public health crisis extend, or if the unemployment rate increases. The payments would phase-out for higher-income taxpayers.

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