Trump to Sign $2T Coronavirus Relief Fund by 4 PM by Jessy Samuel Ejah
The House passed a $2 trillion coronavirus relief bill on Friday, sending the unprecedented measure to President Donald Trump's desk after a scramble to block an effort to delay its passage.
The chamber approved what is believed to be the largest spending package in U.S. history by voice vote, which simply measures if more lawmakers shout for "aye" or "nay" on whether to support it. Rep. Thomas Massie, R-Ky., tried to force a full yes or no vote on the measure, which could have delayed its passage by hours. Irritated House members rushed back to Washington in cars and near-empty planes to head off his effort, and some eviscerated him for risking their safety. Trump called him a "third rate Grandstander" and said he should be booted out of the Republican party.
The plan, which includes one-time payments to individuals, strengthened unemployment insurance, additional health-care funding and loans and grants to businesses to deter layoffs, got through the Senate unanimously on Wednesday night. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi had described the bill "as mitigation" of the pandemic's destruction, predicting Congress will draft more plans to aid in "recovery."
Trump will sign the bill at a ceremony set for 4 p.m. ET. While it is unclear how quickly the government will dole out some of the money such as increased unemployment benefits and small business loans, the White House and congressional leaders have said some individuals will receive direct payments of up to $1,200 within three weeks.