Washington, D.C. — Today, the U.S. House of Representatives passed the American Rescue Plan, President Joe Biden’s plan to address the health and economic consequences of the coronavirus pandemic. The plan will now be considered in the U.S. Senate.
Following the bill’s passage in the House, Winnie Stachelberg, executive vice president for External Affairs at the Center for American Progress, released the following statement:
Today’s passage of the American Rescue Plan in the House of Representatives represents a tremendous step forward in the United States’ fight to combat the COVID-19 pandemic and keep families, unemployed workers, states and local governments, and small businesses whole until we’ve sufficiently contained the virus.
In addition to helping scale up vaccination efforts and providing families additional support in the form of direct payments and expanded access to health coverage, the plan would also promote the well-being of America’s families and children by providing critical resources to reopen schools, address learning loss, and keep child care centers afloat following a year of lower enrollment and significant capital expenses. Furthermore, the expansion and improvements made to the child tax credit, earned income tax credit, and temporary assistance for needy families programs would dramatically cut poverty. Additionally, the House included a provision that would raise the minimum wage to $15 an hour and eliminate the subminimum wage. Raising the minimum wage is a key form of economic stimulus, which would help 32 million Americans make ends meet, spur spending at businesses large and small, and help the country recover more quickly from the COVID-19 crisis.
While long overdue, these supports are crucial in light of the adversity brought on by the past year and would be a particular boost to all those in need, including Black, Indigenous, and other people of color who have suffered disproportionately from the pandemic and economic crisis. It’s why the American Rescue Plan is supported by bipartisan elected leaders at the state and local level, has earned the support of the business community, and is overwhelmingly popular—earning the support of nearly 3 in 4 Americans, including roughly half of Republicans. The Senate should move without delay to deliver the American people the help they so desperately need and strongly support.
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