Ever since Congress passed the American Rescue Plan Act in March, and with it the $1,400 stimulus checks for most Americans, there have been calls for a fourth round of stimulus checks, to join the Rescue Plan and the two packages that passed in 2020.
The calls have come from multiple letters from members of Congress, as well as petitions that have garnered millions of signatures. But despite that, the Biden Administration does not appear ready to support such checks.
An additional round of stimulus checks was not included in Biden’s first proposed federal budget, nor was it part of his proposed American Jobs Plan and American Families Plan spending packages. More recently, the bipartisan and reconciliation packages being pursued by the administration have also not included new rounds of checks. The White House Press Secretary has stated, on more than one occasion, that the administration is pursuing solutions that don’t include new stimulus checks.
“We are very proud of this plan,” Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., told the press after the announcement of the deal among Senate Democrats for the reconciliation bill, as reported earlier this week by CNBC. “We know we have a long road to go. We’re going to get this done for the sake of making average Americans’ lives a whole lot better.”
However, this week a social media post made the rounds, claiming that the fourth round of checks had in fact been passed and was on the way.
“And it passed 15 minutes ago. WE GET ANOTHER STIMULUS CHECK FOR $2500 on July 30, 2021. We did it!!!,” the post said. “The article below tells u what you need to do to receive it quicker and how to track it I already filled out my form.”
In some versions, the link below featured a presumably photoshopped picture of a monkey extending its middle finger.
Politifact, which is a Facebook fact-checking partner, debunked the post this week.
“The Facebook post said that stimulus checks will be given out by the end of the month and includes a link promising more information. The link goes to a page with a picture of a gorilla,” the post said. “A fourth stimulus check is being considered, but it has not been implemented. The post was a hoax. We rate its claim Pants on Fire!”
There are checks going out, from the American Rescue Plan, this week, and those are the initial payments from the expanded child tax credit. The payments will go out once a week through the end of the year, and there is a push to either extend the credit by five years or make it permanent.
Stephen Silver, a technology writer for The National Interest, is a journalist, essayist, and film critic, who is also a contributor to The Philadelphia Inquirer, Philly Voice, Philadelphia Weekly, the Jewish Telegraphic Agency, Living Life Fearless, Backstage magazine, Broad Street Review and Splice Today. The co-founder of the Philadelphia Film Critics Circle, Stephen lives in suburban Philadelphia with his wife and two sons. Follow him on Twitter at @StephenSilver.