President Biden's $1.9 trillion Covid Relief plan is on its way to his desk for signature, just weeks after he took office.
We've all heard about the relief checks, unemployment extension and the child tax credit enhancement, but there's so much more to the bill than that.
The health care provisions are huge for everyone who has been laid off from their job and can't afford COBRA or even the ACA exchanges. For people receiving unemployment, their ACA subsidy leaps to the maximum, which in many cases is zero. People facing clawbacks of their 2020 subsidies will have those amounts forgiven. COBRA premiums will be 100 percent subsidized through the end of September, and ACA subsidies are now increased, covering people earning more than 400 percent of the Federal poverty level and limiting the maximum anyone pays to 8.5 percent of their income.
But there is so much more. Money for desperately needed state and local aid, money for accelerated vaccine delivery, and $25 billion to help people behind in their rent.
As Joe Biden once said, this whole bill is a "BFD" and certainly the most progressive piece of legislation to be passed in decades, if not ever.
UPDATE: Statement from President Biden, who will sign "A people's law at the people's house."
For weeks now, an overwhelming percentage of Americans – Democrats, Independents, and Republicans – have made it clear they support the American Rescue Plan. Today, with final passage in the House of Representatives, their voice has been heard.
Now we move forward with the resources needed to vaccinate the nation. To get $1,400 in direct payments to 85% of American households. To expand coverage and help with lowering health care premiums. To give small businesses what they need to stay open. To expand unemployment insurance, provide food and nutrition assistance. To help keep a roof over people’s heads. To cut child poverty in half.
This legislation is about giving the backbone of this nation – the essential workers, the working people who built this country, the people who keep this country going – a fighting chance.
I want to thank all the members who voted for it, especially Speaker Pelosi, the finest and most capable speaker in the history of our nation. Once again, she has led into law an historic piece of legislation that addresses a major crisis and lifts up millions of Americans.
On Friday, I look forward to signing the American Rescue Plan into law at the White House – a people’s law at the people’s house.