UPDATED 3/11/21 2:23 p.m. ET: President Joe Biden has signed the $1.9 trillion COVID-19 relief bill into law. “This historic legislation is about rebuilding the backbone of this country,” he said, according to the Associated Press. Biden is expected to share a speech on Thursday evening at 8 p.m. ET, where he will share plans to “launch the next phase of the COVID response and explain what we will do as a government and what we will ask of the American people.”
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After considerable delays, the House of Representatives passed the $1.9 trillion COVID-19 relief package on Wednesday, with $1,400 stimulus checks included.
NBC News reports the vote of 220 to 211 will send the legislation to President Joe Biden, who is expected to sign the bill on Friday. The relief package will grant $1,400 direct payments to people who make under $75,000 annually, and $2,800 to married couples making less than $150,000. The plan is to get the money to every eligible American by the end of March. The relief package will also extend unemployment benefits, and boost funding for vaccine distribution and school reopening efforts.
Any out-of-work Americans can receive $300 per week in addition to their state’s unemployment aid up until September. Child tax will be expanded to $3,6000 for children up to the age of 5, and $3,00 for children aged between 6 to 17. On Tuesday, Pelosi was asked if the bill would be the final one, to which she replied, “You’re just going to have to ask the virus—if it stops mutating, if it stops spreading and therefore mutating, then this will be.”
On Wednesday, Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer said the relief package can make “a big difference” to Americans struggling throughout the pandemic. “It does so good for so many people,” he added. “And one of our missions is to show people that government can actually make their lives better.”
Despite passing in Congress, the bill faced opposition from Republicans right up until Wednesday. Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene, who has attracted a lot of attention for her support of far-right conspiracy theories, attempted to disrupt the proceedings and made a motion to adjourn the chamber. She apparently took issue with the “massive woke progressive” bill, but the House rejected her motion and quickly moved on.
House Minority leader Kevin McCarthy also expressed his distaste for the bill, which he called “Costly, corrupt, and liberal.” He added, “They called it the ‘most progressive piece of legislation in history.’” While the passing of the bill is no doubt a success for the Biden administration, it’s also somewhat disappointing for progressives. The provision to raise the minimum wage to $15-an-hour was removed, with the Senate parliamentarian claiming it violated the rules. More moderate Democrats also expressed a desire to keep the minimum wage conversation out of the bill.
The news comes just days after the Senate passed the bill by a slim 50-49 margin.
So yeah, stimmys for all!