WATERTOWN, N.Y. (WWNY) - Both Tedra Cobb and Elise Stefanik said Wednesday they favor continued negotiation on another round of stimulus payments.
That, after President Trump tweeted Tuesday that he was calling a halt to talks until after the election.
Stefanik and Cobb are running to represent the north country - including Jefferson, Lewis and St. Lawrence counties - in congress. Stefanik is the Republican who has represented northern New York since 2014; Cobb is the Democrat who challenged her in 2018 and again this year.
The first round of stimulus earlier this year provided $1,200 one time payments, added another $600 to unemployment insurance and gave small businesses money to keep workers employed.
Tuesday, President Trump announced there wouldn’t be any more stimulus until after the election, which sent stocks plunging. They recovered Wednesday, after the president said he would support one-time stimulus checks for individuals, and funding for small businesses and airlines.
“I was very glad to see President Trump’s announcement that he would immediately sign a standalone bill to provide struggling Americans with stimulus relief, which I fully support,” Stefanik said in a statement.
“Leaders should get back to the table and continue negotiating,” she said.
“He (Trump) needs to step up to the plate and Elise Stefanik needs to hold him accountable. She should be there every day working with this president and working with the Democratic leadership to get us the stimulus we need,” Cobb told 7 News Wednesday morning.
Cobb supports the one-time stimulus checks; the extra $600 unemployment benefit which ran out in July; money sent directly to local governments; money for schools; money for small businesses.
“$600 is not a lot of money that we’re asking for and families are struggling and will continue to struggle until we have a vaccine,” Cobb said.
“Let’s get through this immediate crisis and then we can look at where our spending is. But right now, we’ve gotta help people."
Stefanik, in her statement, blamed the Democratic leadership for “refusing to work across the aisle.”
“I have been very clear: I support passing another bipartisan COVID relief bill that provides relief to small businesses, hardworking families, and state and local governments which fund our police forces, fire departments, and schools,” Stefanik said.
Stefanik noted that she introduced a bill to provide $500 billion to local governments. In the bill Democrats passed through the House of Representatives last week, they proposed $417 billion for state and local governments.
The stimulus bill passed by Democrats last week was dubbed “Heroes 2.0,” which Stefanik attacked as including “stimulus payments for illegals and the releasing of criminals.”
“Tedra Cobb must stop hiding from voters and answer whether she would have voted for the Heroes 2.0 Act,” Stefanik said in her statement.
As passed by the Democrats, the bill does provide for stimulus payments to people who do not have Social Security numbers, which includes immigrants in the country illegally but who pay federal income taxes.
The bill also requires the federal Bureau of Prisons to send to home confinement anyone who is 50 or over, is within 12 months of release, or has a list of COVID-19 risk conditions. People who pose a specific and substantial risk of bodily injury to or to use violent force against another person would not be eligible.
“I wouldn’t have voted for this bill,” Cobb said in response. “But helping our businesses shouldn’t be a political game. This is the entire problem with Washington.”