Senate reaches deal for $2 trillion coronavirus relief package

The US Senate is the focus of negoations on a massive coronavirus economic support package

The US Senate is the focus of negoations on a massive coronavirus economic support package More

Around 19,000 people have died with coronavirus across the planet since it emerged in China's Wuhan province in January, and more than 425,000 infections have been confirmed.

Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., said: "We have a bipartisan agreement on the largest rescue package in American history".

So what was really accomplished?

Even with the Senate open, text of the legislation still hadn't been released, and there were few details on all the provisions. Includes up to $50 billion for passenger airlines, $8 billion for cargo carriers, $17 billion for "businesses critical to maintaining national security".

Final issues included a push by Democrats for a dramatic increase in food stamp benefits in exchange for accepting billions more in funding for the administration's farm bailout that Republicans have included in the stimulus bill. Sen. According to Schumer, no.

The money was in the prior GOP-crafted Senate bill that stalled earlier in the week. It would expand unemployment benefits and also make direct payments to most Americans, the AP reports. Furloughed workers would get whatever amount a state usually provides for unemployment, plus a $600 per week add-on, with gig workers like Uber drivers covered for the first time.

Undeterred, The New York Times called this "a significant expansion of unemployment benefits". This component was one of the more contentious in discussions between Democrats and Republicans.

Trump indicated the checks would go out by April 6, according to Senate Democratic leader Charles Schumer, but during the prior recession, it took about two months for those to go out. The new bill does include a tax credit for student loans.

The bill would set aside $130 billion for hospitals, and $150 billion for state and local governments.

The package includes up to four months of unemployment benefits, what Senate Democratic Leader Charles E. Schumer of NY calls "unemployment insurance on steroids". "The men and women of the greatest country on earth are going to defeat this coronavirus and reclaim our future, and the Senate is going to make sure they have the ammunition they need to do it".

Senate Democrats blocked a procedural vote to fast-track the legislation on Sunday night, accusing Senate Republicans of turning the $500 billion "Exchange Stabilization Fund" - created to extend credit from the government to big business - into a "slush fund" by resisting oversight over its allocation.

- Small businesses: Includes $350 billion.

"This bill pays you more not to work than if you were working", Republican Senator Lindsey Graham, a Trump ally, said at a news conference. The proposal would bar businesses controlled by the president, vice president, members of Congress and heads of executive branch departments from receiving loans or grants from the Treasury programs.

But earlier in the week neither Trump not his company, the Trump Organization, had ruled out applying to for congressional bailout funds if they became available. "We'll be looking at a lot of things", he noted. How many people lost their jobs for stuff around the margins?

But he later sounded more cautious, saying: "We'll only do it if it's good".

USA stocks had already surged Tuesday on expectations of an agreement. "For the past three days, Democrat leadership in Congress took their eye off the ball, delaying consideration of this bipartisan-crafted bill". "This is the art of coming together".

"I helped write the #GreenNewDeal and I think this is ridiculous", Chakrabarti wrote on Twitter.

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