February 11, 2021

Biden and Republican Lawmakers Fall Apart on Relief Package

Political News – Biden and Republican Lawmakers Fall Apart on Relief Package

Even before officially taking office; President Joe Biden made political news when he floated the idea of a $1.9 trillion relief package for the American public. While Republican lawmakers are on board with another deal; they are not ready to simply push through a package of that size. Ten GOP lawmakers will be at the White House on Monday to meet; with the president and discuss a package that would come in at around $600 million.

The meeting came to pass after the lawmakers sent President Biden a letter on Sunday; urging him not to push through a package that relied solely on Democratic Party votes. The House and Senate are prepared to vote this week on a budget resolution that would allow Biden’s initial aid package to be approved on a majority vote; which would almost certainly happen now that the Democrats have the majority in the Senate.

Time is certainly of the essence; as the President wants a new relief deal in place by March; which is when aid and unemployment assistance comes to an end under the existing deal. With both sides seemingly very far apart in terms of the size of the new package; Biden is taking the Monday meeting in hopes of playing a larger role in getting the deal done by trying to bring both sides closer together.

Biden has made it clear

That he is more than happy to meet with Republican lawmakers to discuss the new relief package, White House press secretary Jen Psaki said over the weekend that the President is still very much set on delivering the deal that he has proposed. It does appear, though, that getting the ten Republicans on board might prove to be a tough sell.

In their letter; the Republicans proposed that $160 billion of their proposed $600 billion package would go towards vaccines, testing, and treatment of the coronavirus. They are also looking at a more targeted relief effort as opposed to simply issuing all Americans a $1,400 stimulus check; which is part of the deal proposed by the President.

If Biden can somehow manage to sway these ten Republicans to agree to accepting his deal; he would then have the 60 votes needed to pass the aid package through Senate without the possibility of potential blocking efforts. That, though, seems unlikely at this point.

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