President Donald Trump on Friday signed the $2.2 trillion stimulus bill meant to fuel the fight against the CCP virus pandemic and sustain the hard-hit economy as the nation takes drastic measures to stop the spread of the disease.
Prior to signing the bill, Trump called the stimulus package “historic.” The unprecedented measure is the largest stimulus package in the nations modern history.
“This will deliver urgently needed relief to our nations families, workers and businesses and thats what this is all about,” Trump said.
The president thanked Republicans and Democrats for “coming together, setting aside their differences and putting America first.”
The stimulus package includes direct payments of $1,200 to most Americans and jobless benefits to millions who have lost jobs. Companies of all sizes will get loans, grants, and tax breaks. The measure includes billions for states and cities as well as the healthcare system.
The House of Representatives passed the bill on a voice vote hours earlier, despite vocal concerns expressed by far-left Democrats and some Republicans. The Senate approved the measure on a 96-0 vote two days earlier.
Lawmakers on both sides of the aisle supported the measure despite opposing some of its provisions. Hours before signing the measure, Trump said it was “90 percent great” but some concessions had to be made to get the Democrats on board.
“Im going to have to vote for something that has things in it that break my heart,” said Rep. David Schweikert (R-Ariz.).
Although a few speeches on the House floor turned to partisan rhetoric and attacks, most of the lawmakers looked past ideological differences and focused on the urgency of the crisis.
“We have no time to dither,” said Rep. Gerald Connolly (D-Va.) “We have no time to engage in ideological or petty partisan fights. Our country needs us as one.”
The United States had over 90,000 confirmed cases of COVID-19 as Trump prepared to sign the bill. The CCP virus outbreak had killed 1,475 people in the United States as of March 27.
The Epoch Times refers to the novel coronavirus, which causes COVID-19, as the CCP virus because the Chinese Communist Partys coverup and mismanagement allowed the virus to spread throughout China before it was transmitted worldwide.
The stimulus package includes $500 billion in loans to industries, $100 billion for hospitals, $58 billion in aid to airlines, $150 billion for states and local governments, and $45 billion for disaster relief.
The Department of Defense will receive $10.5 billion, including $1.5 billion for the national guard. The Pentagon has been deploying resources to help states handle the surge of patients with COVID-19.
Americans who meet an income criteria will each receive $1,200. Married couples will receive $2,400 and $500 per child.
Some Republicans raised concerns about funding for seemingly extraneous groups and institutions, including $75 million for the National Foundation on the Arts and the Humanities, $75 million for the National Endowment for Humanities, and $25 million for the J.F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts.
The package also allocates $11 billion for three international development groups: the African Development Fund, the African Development Bank, and the International Development Association. While the money for the domestic institutions is tied to responding to the COVID-19 outbreak, the funds to the international groups include no such provision.
The run-up to the vote contained an element of drama because libertarian-conservative Thomas MassiRead More – Source