With a growing number of Americans fearing that further economic aid is not on the way amid stalled stimulus relief bill negotiations, a new petition is urging Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden to publicly support $2,000 monthly payments. The petition comes as next to no progress has been made regarding additional relief, with a newly proposed "skinny" bill forgoing the inclusion of stimulus checks.
Created on Change.org and having received the support of nearly 400,000 people, the petition noted that the CARES Act, signed by President Donald Trump in late March, provided $1,200 stimulus payments to eligible Americans. However, "millions of people fell through the cracks and still have not received their stimulus check" and "many will have to wait until the fall to receive their checks if they are able to receive them at all." Expressing fears that further relief will fall in line with the 2008 relief measures, which "bailed out big banks and corporations that were 'too big to fail,'" the petition urges Biden to support a universal basic income (UBI) of at least $2,000 a month until the pandemic is over.
"This time we call on Joe Biden and the Democratic National Committee to support bailing out the people and publicly endorse a Universal Basic Income of at least $2,000 a month for every resident of the United States until the current health epidemic has passed and people are able to return to work," it reads. "This dependable monthly stimulus will help millions of recently unemployed Americans and also enable us to help each other get through this crisis."
The petition has a goal of 500,000 signatures, of which it has received more than 375,000 as of this posting, with many people expressing the dire need for additional economic relief in the comments. In one response, a person said that they were choosing to sign the petition "because families are in desperate need of help." Another person noted that "the American people are seeing years of their hard work completely destroy in front of their faces."
While Biden has yet to comment on the petition, or voice his support for a UBI, which has been supported by a handful of Democrats, he has laid out his plans for economic relief should he be elected president. As he accepted the Democratic presidential nomination last week, he laid out his agenda to address the challenges facing America today. Along with boosting unemployment benefits and implementing paid sick leave for workers, he also said that he would support a second round of stimulus payments. His vice presidential running mate, Kamala Harris, meanwhile, previously backed the Monthly Economic Crisis Support Act, which sought to give up to $2,000 a month to anyone earning up to $120,000 per year.