Joe Manchin and Susan Collins want to bar stimulus checks for people who made $50,000 and over
Sen. Joe Manchin (D-WV) on CNN (screengrab)

In West Virginia and Maine $50,000 is a lot of money. For people living in Dallas, Miami, anywhere in California or urban areas, the cost of living is significantly higher and $50,000 isn't as much as they think. Still, Sens. Joe Manchin (D-WV) and Susan Collins (R-ME) want to restrict stimulus checks going to those over $50,000 a year.

Politico reported Thursday that the two senators are working to pass the amendment to the stimulus package that Democrats hope to pass before the end of the week.

Citing the "deficit," they specifically want to restrict "upper-income taxpayers." those who earn $50,000 aren't upper-income according to a Pew Research survey from last July.

"Your size-adjusted household income and the cost of living in your area are the factors we use to determine your income tier," Pew explained. "Middle-income households – those with an income that is two-thirds to double the U.S. median household income – had incomes ranging from about $48,500 to $145,500 in 2018. Lower-income households had incomes less than $48,500 and upper-income households had incomes greater than $145,500 (all figures computed for three-person households, adjusted for the cost of living in a metropolitan area, and expressed in 2018 dollars)."

The other complication with the Manchin and Collins amendment is that it doesn't take into account middle or upper-income households where people have lost their jobs. If someone made $100,000 in 2019 but were laid off last year, they still get nothing under this bill and must continue to survive on the $300 unemployment payments.

MSNBC's Chris Hayes suggested to Budget Committee Sen. Tim Kaine (D-VA) that a better solution would be to get the money out to all Americans and then for those who made over a certain income ask that it be returned in their tax returns.