President-elect Joe Biden has proposed a COVID-19 stimulus relief plan that would give qualifying Americans an extra $400 a week in extra unemployment benefits. However, how long would Biden’s extra $400 last?
The answer is September 30, 2021 – at least. The extra benefits previously approved are set to expire on March 14, according to Yahoo Money. The extra benefits are in addition to unemployment benefits given out by states.
The proposals came in a prime-time address by Biden, who rolled out the “America Rescue Plan.” His stimulus proposal would total $1.9 trillion.Biden also wants to increase the minimum wage to $15 per hour. The president can’t approve these things on his own, however, and that includes the enhanced unemployment benefits. That will require a vote in Congress, which is divided.
Here’s what you need to know:
Biden Promised ‘Extended Unemployment’ On Twitter
Biden’s proposal tacks on an additional $100 a week because extra unemployment benefits of $300 weekly were approved in the last stimulus package. The extra benefits would run through Sept. 30.
“While Congress’s bipartisan action in December was a step in the right direction, it was only a down payment. It fell far short of the resources needed to tackle the immediate crisis,” according to a Biden statement, Yahoo Money reports. “We are in a race against time, and absent additional government assistance, the economic and public health crises could worsen in the months ahead.”
Writing on Twitter on January 15, Biden pledged:
Direct cash payments.
Aid to small businesses.
Keeping essential frontline workers on the job.
Those are the key elements of my American Rescue Plan.
Biden added: “We have no time to waste when it comes to getting this virus under control and building our economy back better. Tune in as I announce my American Rescue Plan.” He continued, “We need to tackle the public health and economic crises we’re facing head-on. That’s why today, I’m announcing my American Rescue Plan. Together we’ll change the course of the pandemic, build a bridge toward economic recovery, and invest in racial justice.”
Top Democrats Like Biden’s Plan
Biden’s plan has support from top Democrats.
“After Congress passed the most recent emergency COVID-relief bill in December, Democrats were clear that much moreneeded to be done,” they wrote. “We are pleased the Biden-Harris package includes much of what Congressional Democrats have been fighting for, including an increase in direct payments to $2,000 for American families, support for vaccine distribution and testing, additional aid to small businesses, funding to safeguard state and local jobs, extension of unemployment benefits, help for renters and children in poor and middle-class families and more.”
However, Republicans are still a factor because the Senate is divided 50-50 due to the results of Georgia runoff results. That means Mitch McConnell will still be at the table.
READ NEXT: The Life & Death of Brian Sicknick