- The Washington Times - Friday, March 12, 2021

President Biden took a victory lap on Friday with the Democrats who crafted the party’s $1.9 trillion coronavirus relief package, saying the massive law can fundamentally shift how the public views the notion of “trickle-down” economics.

“It changes the paradigm,” Mr. Biden said at a Rose Garden event, which was held a day after he signed the bill into law. “For the first time in a long time, this bill puts working people in this nation first.”

He said the wealthy aren’t bad people, but that they have to pay their “fair share” and that the package will ultimately help rich people anyway by lifting up everyone.

“This is the first time we’ve been able, since the Johnson administration and maybe even before that, to begin to change the paradigm,” Mr. Biden said. “We’ve seen time and time again that trickle-down does not work.”

Mr. Biden walked out to applause from the members on hand, which he returned back to them.



“We’ve delivered,” he said. “You made it happen.”

Mr. Biden also said the fight against the coronavirus and the associated economic fallout is not over yet.

“Conditions can change. We’re not finished yet,” he said. “The scientists have warned us about new variants of this virus. And the devil is in the details of implementing this legislation.”

“There’s a lot of work for all of us left to do, but I know we’ll do it,” the president said.

Vice President Kamala Harris gave Mr. Biden repeated and effusive verbal pats on the back right before he spoke.

“You put in the work to make it happen,” Ms. Harris said.

Mr. Biden jokingly mocked the “surprise” assignments he got as vice president from former President Obama, like overseeing the approximately $800 billion stimulus package in 2009.

“She could do it,” he said of Ms. Harris.

The Democratic leaders on hand included House Speaker Nancy Pelosi of California, Senate Majority Leader Charles E. Schumer of New York, and other members who are part of Democratic leadership or who chair committees directly involved in crafting the package.

“Our chairs were dazzling in their own work, intellect, integrity, imagination for the American people working with their Senate colleagues,” Mrs. Pelosi said.

There were no congressional Republicans in attendance, and the package did not earn a single Republican yes vote in the House or Senate.

Mr. Biden, Ms. Harris, and other members of the administration are now hitting the road to try to sell the benefits of the package to voters.

The stops within the next week include trips to the battleground states of Pennsylvania, Nevada and Georgia.

Mr. Biden spoke after he delivered a national address Thursday evening forecasting better things ahead in the fight against the coronavirus that has now spanned more than a year.
The president said Thursday that he plans to direct states to open up vaccine eligibility to all adults by May 1 and that people still living under tight lockdown restrictions could be able to have small gatherings in time for the July 4 holiday.

The relief package includes direct payments of up to $1,400 per person for millions of Americans. The checks are supposed to start hitting bank accounts this weekend.

It also extends a $300-per-week federal subsidy to regular unemployment checks into September and includes $350 billion to states and localities, about $170 billion for K-12 schools and colleges, and more than $28 billion for hard-hit restaurants.

Republicans have dismissed it as a costly boondoggle, pointing to items like the approximately $86 billion bailout for multi-employer pension plans as evidence that Democrats dressed up longtime party priorities as coronavirus relief.

Top Democratic Party leaders have already said they plan to push for a permanent extension of a bolstered child tax credit. The package increases the credit from $2,000 to $3,000, and $3,600 for children under 6.

Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell of Kentucky said the $1.9 trillion is way beyond what the country needs at this point and that Republicans plan to educate the public on all the non-coronavirus-related provisions in the bill.

Earlier this week, Mr. McConnell “pre-butted” any Democratic attempts to tie a coming economic recovery to what’s in the bill.

“The economy is coming back. People are getting vaccine - we’re on the way out of this,” Mr. McConnell said. “We’re about to have a boom. And if we do have a boom, it will have absolutely nothing to do with this $1.9 trillion.”

Mr. Biden spoke after he delivered a national address Thursday evening forecasting better things ahead in the fight against the coronavirus that has now spanned more than a year.

The president said Thursday that he plans to direct states to open up vaccine eligibility to all adults by May 1 and that people still living under tight lockdown restrictions could be able to have small gatherings in time for the July 4 holiday.

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