Update on the Fourth Stimulus Check: the Push for More Money Has Stopped in Congress

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Federal legislation that would provide Americans with a fourth economic payment remains stalled in Congress in the face of rising inflation and high gas prices.

In March, California Democratic Representative Mike Thompson announced the introduction of new legislation, dubbed the Gas Rebate Act of 2022, that would send eligible Americans energy rebate checks.

 

Stimulus Check

 

The legislation, co-sponsored by Representatives John Larson and Lauren Underwood, was introduced in response to rising gas prices in the United States as a result of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.

Stimulus Measures

Rep. Mike Thompson of California introduced legislation in March to provide eligible Americans with additional economic benefits in response to rising gas prices across the United States. Economic stimulus checks are seen above at the Philadelphia Financial Center in Philadelphia on May 8, 2008.

“Americans are feeling the financial impact of Vladimir Putin’s illegal invasion of Ukraine at the pump, and right now, we must collaborate on common-sense policy solutions to alleviate the financial burden on my constituents,” Thompson said in a statement announcing the legislation.

Thompson stated that the legislation would provide eligible Americans with $100 energy rebate checks “for the remainder of 2022 in any month in which the national average gas price exceeds $4.00 per gallon.”

Thompson’s office stated in a press release that the legislation would follow the same model as many previous Economic Impact Payments, providing “$100 to single filers earning less than $75,000 and phased out at $80,000” and “$100 to joint filers earning more than $150,000 and phased out at $160,000.”

The bill was referred to the House Committee on Ways and Means shortly after it was introduced in the House, where it is currently stalled. It is unknown when the legislation will be brought to a vote.

The United States imposed numerous sanctions on Russia’s economy in response to Russia’s invasion of Ukraine on February 24. In March, US President Joe Biden issued an executive order prohibiting the importation of Russian oil, precipitating a nationwide spike in gas prices.

“Last year, the United States imported nearly 700,000 barrels per day of crude oil and refined petroleum products from Russia, and this action will deprive Russia of billions of dollars in annual revenue from American drivers and consumers,” the White House said in a statement following Biden’s executive order.

According to AAA data, gas prices have remained higher than in previous years in the aftermath of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine and America’s ban on Russian oil imports. According to AAA data, the average national gas price was $4.159 on Friday, April 29.

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In comparison, AAA data indicates that the national average was $2.889 a year ago. Additionally, AAA data indicates that the national average for gas prices a month ago was $4.244.

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