Jim Gearhart agrees with President Donald Trump that the $1 trillion coronavirus stimulus and relief package proposed by Congress does not include a large enough direct payment to individuals.

“They’re going to give $600 to people who are hurting and in dire straits. They are in very, very bad shape. They have a very big need. $600 doesn’t go very far,” Jim said in the latest weekly Jim Gearhart podcast and Facebook Live show, presented every Thursday at 10:30 a.m. at Facebook.com/NJ1015.

Trump threatened to veto the bill unless the amount of direct payments is increased to $2,000. Democrats are agreeable to that amount but Republicans are not and blocked a vote in the Senate.

On Wednesday, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell said Congress has provided enough pandemic aid and was unwilling to budge despite pressure by Trump and some fellow senators, saying that the extra money would only go to families who don't really need it.

More disturbing to Jim is that most of the money in the bill is going to things that have nothing to do with the pandemic. Trump said in a video via social media that that the bill also contains $85.5 million for assistance to Cambodia, $134 million to Burma, $1.3 billion for Egypt.

Members of Congress also had only a short amount of time to read the 5,000-page bill before taking a vote, according to Jim. Podcast partner Bob Williams said a member would need several members of their staff to review the bill to learn what’s in it.

“You get the idea they want to keep the people in need because this keeps their thumb down on top of them and their activities,” Jim said.

The Jim Gearhart Show podcast is available every week on New Jersey 101.5 and in the New Jersey 101.5 app. You can also subscribe with your favorite podcasting app for iPhones, Android devices.

The Jim Gearhart show is LIVE on Facebook every Thursday at 10:30 a.m., at Facebook.com/NJ1015. Got an idea for an upcoming installment of Jim's show? Meet Jim at Facebook.com/NJ1015 to suggest it in the comments, or email Jim@nj1015.com.

The post above reflects the thoughts and observations of New Jersey 101.5's Jim Gearhart. Any opinions expressed are Jim's own.

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