Assessing Claims in the Coronavirus Stimulus Debate


A spokeswoman for the House transportation committee said that the BART extension was not receiving special funding, but rather “simply being funded proportionately” to other similar projects around the country.

Over all, the bill includes $30 billion to help public transit agencies, the bulk of which covers operational costs of transit systems across the nation. About $1 billion of that goes to a Transportation Department grant program to ensure that already approved transit projects — like the BART extension as well as rail improvements in Republican-led states like Indiana and Arizona — remain solvent.

“Art, museums, and library services” refer to the $135 million set aside for the National Endowment for the Arts and $200 million for the Institute of Museum and Library Services.

The bill also devotes $50 million to family planning projects, which Ms. Blackburn characterized as “services including Planned Parenthood.” The group is not explicitly mentioned in the bill, but it has previously received family planning grants. Other grantees include state and local health agencies (including Tennessee’s Department of Health family planning program) and other nonprofits.

Another $50 million is earmarked for “environmental justice purposes,” the bill reads, and is intended to address the health outcome disparities from pollution and the pandemic.


“There are bailouts to Planned Parenthood, stimulus grants to illegal immigrant families.” — Representative Jim Banks, Republican of Indiana, in an interview this week on Fox News.

This is misleading. Mr. Banks’s claim about “illegal immigrant families” receiving stimulus grants refers to families with mixed immigration status, not families where all members are undocumented. Under the bill, couples who jointly file their taxes need to have only one valid Social Security number to receive a stimulus check. But the amount would be $1,400 for an individual, not $2,800 for a couple.


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