- The Washington Times - Friday, March 27, 2020

President Trump signed a $2.2 trillion economic rescue package into law Friday to provide direct payments to most Americans and aid to workers and businesses idled by the coronavirus outbreak.

“This will deliver urgently needed relief to our nation’s families, workers and businesses,” the president said at the White House. “I want to thank Democrats and Republicans for coming together, setting aside their differences and putting America first.”

The average family of four will receive payments of about $3,400 within three weeks.

The measure provides $500 billion in loans for distressed companies, beefed-up unemployment insurance for 39 weeks in most states, $350 billion in grants and loans for small businesses and direct payments of $1,200 to most Americans, plus $500 per child.

As he signed the biggest economic package in history, the president quipped, “I never signed anything with a ‘T’ on it.”

“It’s going to go a long way and it’s going to make a lot of people very happy,” Mr. Trump said.

Among the five congressional Republicans with the president in the Oval Office were Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell and House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy. There were no Democratic lawmakers in attendance at the signing ceremony.

“It’s a proud moment for all of us,” Mr. McConnell said.

Vice President Mike Pence said the new law means that “today, every American family, every American business can know that help is on the way.”

The president’s signature capped a frantic week of deal-making between the White House and congressional Democrats as major portions of the economy ground to a halt to stop the spread of the virus.

“We got hit by the invisible enemy and we got hit hard,” Mr. Trump said.

He said the economy would come roaring back, adding, “I think we are going to have a tremendous rebound.”

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