The Senate has approved the $1.9 trillion covid-19 relief bill, meaning the additional unemployment benefits that millions of out-of-work Americans need to survive right now will continue on for at least another seven months. Wow, damn. Just read that sentence. Good country. Normal country.
The Associated Press described the Democrats’ victory on Saturday as a narrow one, noting that the 50-49 vote was divided neatly along party lines. (Republican Sen. Dan Sullivan of Alaska was M.I.A. for some reason). Along with extending those $300 weekly payments on top of regular state benefits, the bill, which Pres. Joe Biden is expected to sign, will send checks of up to $1,400 to most Americans, provide spending for vaccine distribution and testing, and infuse a bunch of money into struggling industries.
“We tell the American people, help is on the way,” Majority Leader Chuck Schumer of New York said, per the AP. “Our job right now is to help our country get from this stormy present to that hopeful future.”
The “vote-a-thon” leading up to the bill’s approval, as the AP called it, lasted all through the night thanks to a bunch of GOP-favored amendments that failed to pass and other bullshit stalling measures—like the nightmarishly transmisogynistic one Alabama Sen. Tommy Tuberville tried to add that would’ve prohibited funding for educational institutions that let trans women play on women’s sports teams, per Yahoo! Sports.
Republicans weren’t the only ones who lost big on the bill. As previously reported, Bernie Sanders and other progressives got fucked over on the bill’s federal minimum wage increase by a very smug Kyrsten Sinema and others of their own party. Wait, why am I framing this as a loss for Democrats? It’s the American people who will suffer! Like I said, great country.