Ten moderate Republican senators on Sunday called on the Democratic president Joe Biden significantly reduce its $ 1.9 trillion relief package against the effects of the Covid-19 to receive bipartisan support, at a time when Democrats of the Congress are preparing to advance their plan this week.
A White House economic adviser signaled a willingness to discuss the ideas of Republican senators who mentioned an alternative $ 600 billion law, but said the president would not accept to back down on the need for a comprehensive law to address the health crisis and the economic consequences.
“He is open to ideas, wherever they come from … what he will not recoil from is the need to move quickly with a comprehensive approach,” said National Economic Council director Brian Desse to broadcaster NBC. “A fragmented approach … is not the recipe for success”.
It was not clear whether the movement of 10 of the 50 Republicans in the Senate, with 100 members in total, would change Congressional Democrats’ plans to advance legislation in the coming days.
Biden and other Democrats are trying to use the control they have gained in the House and Senate to move quickly towards the president’s main goal of dealing with the pandemic.
The passing of the new bailout legislation would not only impact Americans and businesses affected by a pandemic that killed some 440,000 people in the United States, but it also offers an initial test of Biden’s promise to work to reduce the party division in Washington . Biden took office on January 20.
Biden’s proposal includes $ 160 billion for vaccines and tests, $ 170 billion for schools and universities and funds to give Americans a $ 1,400 per person stimulus check, among other provisions.