House Passes Final COVID ‘Relief’ Bill

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Posted: Mar 10, 2021 2:30 PM
House Passes Final COVID ‘Relief’ Bill

Source: AP Photo/Susan Walsh

The House of Representatives has passed the final version of the $1.9 trillion COVID bill dubbed a "relief" bill by Democrats, but condemned as a "progressive wish list" by Republicans.

The vote was 220-211, with only one Democratic defection.

While Democrats praised the American Rescue Plan for including $1,400 stimulus checks and expanding the $300 weekly unemployment aid, conservatives note that it also includes millions of wasteful or unnecessary spending like the $100 million going toward the San Francisco Bay Area Rapid Transit system.

Multiple Democrats have even admitted that they are "embarrassed" or uncomfortable" with the amount of pork in the bill.

"There's some waste in there, there's no question there's some waste in there," said Rep. Tom Suozzi (D-NY).

"There will be one line that will probably be somewhat embarrassing," Rep. Adriano Espaillat (D-NY) told CNN, noting that he was not comfortable with it.

Rep. Golden explained his opposition to the stimulus earlier this week.

"During challenging times, the country needs its elected leaders to work together to meet the most urgent needs in their communities. This bill addresses urgent needs, and then buries them under a mountain of unnecessary or untimely spending," the congressman said in a statement. "In reviewing the bill in its full scope, less than 20 percent of the total spending addresses core COVID challenges that are immediately pressing: funding for vaccine distribution and testing, and emergency federal unemployment programs. I support these portions of the bill wholeheartedly and believe we should do more for the people hardest hit by the pandemic by continuing to extend unemployment programs until economic indicators show they are no longer necessary."

President Biden will reportedly sign the bill on Friday.