A $1.9 Trillion Compromise Just Passed The Senate By Slimmest Of Margins

The Senate just passed a COVID-19 package. Let's take a peek at what's inside.

Slimmest of Margins

By a 50-49 margin, Senate Democrats passed a $1.9 Trillion COVID-19 Relief Plan:

"The Senate approved the package along party lines, 50-49, after deliberating all of Friday and into Saturday morning. The package now heads back to the House, which must approve the Senate-revised legislation before sending it to the White House for Mr. Biden’s signature. 

"Sen. Joe Manchin (D., W.Va.) brought the chamber to a standstill for much of Friday, when he balked at a Democratic proposal to extend federal jobless benefits until Oct. 4."

Longest Recorded Vote in History

"Democratic leaders held open an amendment vote during the negotiations with Mr. Manchin for nearly 12 hours, making it the longest recorded vote in modern Senate history."

The bill now heads back to the House where Biden recommends passage. If the Progressives hold out for more, it will delay or even lose passage.

What's In the Compromise?

  • Current $300 weekly benefits extended through Sept. 6.  
  • $1,400 direct payments to many Americans.
  • Senate Democrats lowered the weekly payments to $300 from their $400 level in the House bill, phased out $1,400 direct payments more quickly for some households, and stripped out a minimum-wage increase that had passed the House last weekend.
  • The first $10,200 of the 2020 unemployment benefits will be nontaxable for households making less than $150,000.
  • $350 billion direct aid to state and local governments.
  • An amendment by Tom Carper (D, Delaware) to extend by a year limits on how much high-income earners can deduct certain business losses passed.
  • Temporary expansion of Child Tax Credit through 2021.

Boondoggle 

Much of this is a big boondoggle, as noted previously. For discussion please see Democrats Propose a "Fair Way" Forward. Who Gets the Free Money? Also check out Mitt Romney Explains Biden’s Stimulus Bill Is a $1.9 Trillion Clunker.

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