On Saturday (Feb. 27), President Joe Biden thanked the House of Representatives for passing his relief package for the Chinese Communist virus outbreak and urged the Senate to act on the package as soon as possible. But Republicans have criticized the program, which is only 10 percent funded for Epidemic preparedness.
In prepared remarks at the White House, Biden said that earlier in the day, the lower chamber “took the first step toward making that happen.” “With their vote, we’re one step closer to vaccinating the nation. We’re one step closer to putting $1,400 into the pockets of Americans. We’re one step closer to extending unemployment benefits for the millions of Americans who are about to lose them.”
Biden said he called House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, a California Democrat, and thanked her for her efforts on the $1.9 trillion proposal.
The proposal was not supported by Republicans and was opposed by two Democratic lawmakers.
Vice President Kamala Harris (D-N.Y.) also commented on the bill at a separate event, saying at a virtual celebration of Black History Month that the bill would give most Americans A new round of bailout checks and at least $3,000 to almost every child.
Republicans: Only 10 percent of funds for pandemic preparedness
But House Republicans and two Democrats pointed to measures in the bailout package that appear to have little to do with curbing the spread of the virus. Such as raising the minimum wage and the money disbursed to some areas, such as schools. Only a small percentage of schools are operating this year.
Rep. Andy Barr (R-Texas) said on the floor, “This massive $1.9 trillion in spending is nothing more than a wish list for fiscally irresponsible liberal officials.” “Less than 10 percent of the funds in this bill respond to the epidemic in the form of vaccine distribution and other public health needs.”
“And the vast majority of those funds are being spent on the wrong priorities, such as for state and local governments that are mismanaging the epidemic and addressing the debt before it arrives.”
Pelosi said the House is sending the package to the Senate and is still trying to keep the minimum wage increase in the final package.
If all 50 Democratic senators in the Senate vote for it, they could pass the bill without any of the Republican senators having to vote for it.