Congress Needs to Pass the Stimulus Package- Today


Photo from the Washington Post

On March 6 the Senate voted 50 to 49 to pass the American Rescue Plan.

“I see enormous pain in this country,” said President Biden, as he called for the passage of his American Rescue Plan.

Millions of Americans are struggling to put food on their family’s tables due to the crisis caused by the Covid-19 pandemic. A once fruitful country now has millions of citizens without employment and surviving off of savings, struggling to pay for food, essential bills, and rent. With the pandemic forcing business owners to shut down restaurants, shopping malls, and department stores, many employees were left without compensation. Still, they struggled to find a job and recover from the three to four months that their cities were shut down. 

As both the Republican and Democratic parties agreed that a stimulus check is needed in 2021 after numerous fierce discussions, new controversy arose. President Biden has decided to lower the income cap for stimulus checks as part of his $1.9 trillion COVID-19 relief bill. Those who earn more than $80,000 per year will not be eligible for direct payments of up to $1,400; those with an annual income of less than $80,000 will be the main focus for the stimulus checks.

 Jen Psaki, the White House Press Secretary, explained the changes in a press briefing, saying that Biden’s priority is ensuring that people earning less than $75,000 get the full amount. However, some, such as Sen. Maria Cantwell (D-Wash.), said she was skeptical. “I think the package as it was originally crafted is good to go,” she said. While senator Michael Bennet (D-Colo.) said, “I think it’s an appropriate way of bringing this to a successful conclusion.”

Other changes were forced by the Senate parliamentarian, who ruled the upper chamber could not include a $15 minimum wage, $140 million for a California Rail project, or $1.5 million for the Seaway International Bridge between Massena, New York, Canada.

Although increasing the minimum wage will aid those in financial despair, the focus right now should be the stimulus check.

The concessions will allow the low-income minority in the United States to relieve some of the economic problems they may be experiencing. Although some disagree and believe that a stimulus check should be given to any American regardless of income, this hold up funding for families who are in hardship now, and these families cannot wait. 

The United States government has issued two stimulus checks in the past to millions of families, but it is simply not enough to pay for the United States’ costly lifestyle. The average American spends $150 every two weeks at the grocery store for a family of three. The cost of living in America is $700 to $1,000 a month. With many currently being unemployed, this amount of money is almost impossible for numerous families to meet.  President Biden promised to help Americans with their expenses, and after being sworn in, he began working on a relief package. This package will bring some peace towards families struggling financially as they will be able to pay for previous late rent, guaranteeing a safe space to live for their children and families. 

Although the relief package may not solve everyone’s financial problems, the stimulus checks will allow most of those struggling to re-group and either restructure their financial plans or get their lives back on track. There will never be a bill or action passed that will affect 100% of anything. However, this relief package will help the majority of the struggling people. Since part of the government’s duty is to provide for its citizens and the funds to make it happen, the $1.9 trillion COVID-19 relief package can be passed. It will be a success once it’s done.