Biden said he called House Speaker Nancy Pelosi “just a few moments” before his speech to thank her for “her extraordinary leadership.”
The Senate is set to tackle the bill next week after the Senate parliamentarian dealt Democrats a major blow Thursday, ruling a $15 minimum wage couldn’t be included in the reconciliation process, which can allow Democrats to pass the relief package with a simple majority.
The House’s bill — which passed narrowly without any GOP support — includes the minimum wage provision as of now. Senate Democrats will likely need to vote unanimously to push the relief package through, likely without the wage hike.
The bill promises $1,400 stimulus checks for scores of Americans, along with increasing unemployment payments and the Child Tax Credit, as well as more funding for vaccination efforts and assistance for businesses and state and local governments. Increased unemployment benefits are set to expire in March.
Many Republicans have argued the bill is too bloated and is full of overly partisan items.
America has already seen more than 500,000 coronavirus deaths during the pandemic.