The details of President-elect Joe Biden’s expansive relief plan to help Americans suffering from coronavirus pandemic restrictions were revealed on Thursday.
“We need to tackle the public health and economic crises we’re facing head-on. That’s why today, I’m announcing my American Rescue Plan. Together we’ll change the course of the pandemic, build a bridge toward economic recovery, and invest in racial justice,” said Biden on Twitter.
Here are the main features of the coronavirus relief plan reported by the Washington Post:
- $1,400 stimulus checks
- Extension of enhanced unemployment through September
- Extension of moratoriums on evictions and foreclosures through September
- Expansion of a child care tax credit
- $15 federal minimum wage increase
The $1,400 relief checks are meant to add up to $2,000 with the $600 already sent out to Americans under the bill passed earlier in December. The enhanced unemployment is scheduled to expire in March.
The plan also involves a national vaccination program, a scaling up of coronavirus testing, and support for the communities “hardest hit by COVID-19.”
Biden discussed the details of his proposal in a speech to the country on Thursday evening.
The overall price tag of the plan is estimated to be at just below $2 trillion.
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) issued a joint statement with Senate Democratic Leader Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) in support of the plan.
“These proposals by the Biden-Harris Administration will be critical to getting our country through this challenging period and towards a period of recovery,” read the statement in part. “We echo the President-elect’s call for bipartisan action on his proposal and hope that our Republican colleagues will work with us to quickly enact it.”
Many Americans objected to the coronavirus relief plan that Republicans and Democrats agreed upon in December because it only provided for $600 in relief funds after months of an economic lockdown. Some believe the outrage helped defeat the Republican candidates in the runoff elections in Georgia, which will lead to the Democrats controlling the U.S. Senate.
Biden’s plan will need congressional approval in order to be implemented.