Congress approves coronavirus relief and government spending bill

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The House and Senate passed a $ 900 billion coronavirus relief bill and $ 1.4 trillion government funding measure on Monday night after months of deadlock on Capitol Hill.
Why is this important: The passage of the bill comes before many existing coronavirus relief measures expire on January 1. It also avoids government shutdown.

The big picture: Although the plan is about half the size of the Congressional $ 2.2 trillion CARES bill passed in March, it remains one of the costliest bailouts in modern history.

  • Democratic leaders, who have backed down considerably from their previous campaign for another $ 2 trillion bill, say they view the deal as a “down payment” – something that will help Americans until that Joe Biden take office and that they can pass additional stimulus measures.
  • But some lawmakers, including progressives, are skeptical that Biden will be able to do it as easily as Democrats predict – especially as many Republicans have resumed their posture of deficit hawks now that Trump is on the verge of out and vaccines are distributed across the country. country.

For memory: The House passed Measure 359-53, while the Senate vote was 92-6.

  • The six Republican senators who voted against the bill: Senator Marsha Blackburn of Tennessee, Rand Paul of Kentucky, Rick Scott of Florida, Ron Johnson of Wisconsin, Mike Lee of Utah and Ted Cruz of Texas.

Go further: In the $ 900 billion stimulus compromise

Editor’s Note: This article has been updated with more details, including the Senate vote and more context.

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