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News > U.S.

US: House of Representatives Approves Biden's COVID-19 Aid Bill

  •  Biden's $1.9 trillion relief bill has passed the U.S. House of Representatives by a vote of 219-212.

    Biden's $1.9 trillion relief bill has passed the U.S. House of Representatives by a vote of 219-212. | Photo: Twitter/@CBSNews

Published 27 February 2021

The U.S. House of Representatives today approved a $1.9 billion COVID-19 aid package aimed at stabilizing the economy and boosting vaccines and coronavirus testing.

The initiative was sent to the Senate this Saturday after receiving a 219-212 vote, and as reported by The Washington Post, is the first major item on President Joe Biden's agenda.

Republicans unanimously opposed the economic aid bill, a sharply partisan outcome, just a month after the new president was inaugurated with calls for bipartisanship and unity.


US: House Set to Pass $2 Trillion Aid Bill without $15 Min Wage

The package introduced by House Democrats includes direct aid to small businesses, $1,400 in direct checks to Americans earning less than $75,000 a year, an increase in the child tax credit, direct funding to state and local governments, among other measures.

Before a vote was taken in the House, Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D, Calif.) insisted in a press conference last night that the $15 per hour federal wage increase be approved, regardless of what happens in the Senate.

 The congressional leader said, "As a matter of values, I can say that we will not rest until we pass the $15 minimum wage...if it does not prevail because of Senate rules, we will persist. But we will not stop until we pass the $15 minimum wage very soon."

The passage of the bill comes days after the country reached 500,000 deaths from the COVID-19 pandemic.

The relief package now heads to the Senate, where Democrats are expected to amend it next week and send it back to the House for approval before unemployment insurance benefits expire on March 14.

One component of the bill that the House passed will not pass in the Senate, which is an increase in the federal minimum wage from the current $7.25 per hour to $15.00.

The push to raise the minimum wage faces strong pushback from Republicans and a handful of centrist Democratic lawmakers, who cited a Congressional Budget Office report estimating that while it would lift 900,000 people out of poverty, it may also result in the loss of 1.4 million jobs.

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