President Biden ripped congressional Republicans who point to the deficit as their reason for opposing the $1.9 trillion COVID relief package.
“What Republicans have proposed is either to do nothing, or not enough,” Biden said in prepared remarks, according to the Hill. “All of a sudden many of them have rediscovered fiscal restraint and the concern for the deficits. But don’t kid yourself, this approach will come with a cost: more pain for more people for longer than it has to be.”
The national debt has risen by almost $7.8 trillion during Trump’s time in office. It is the third-biggest increase, relative to the size of the economy, of any U.S. presidential administration, according to a calculation by a leading Washington budget maven, Eugene Steuerle, co-founder of the Urban-Brookings Tax Policy Center.
Biden also indicate that he is willing to move ahead without Republican support.
“If I have to choose between getting help right now to Americans who are hurting so badly and getting bogged down in a lengthy negotiation or compromising on a bill that’s up to the crisis — that’s an easy choice,” Biden said. “I’m going to help the American people that are hurting now.”
Earlier on Friday the Senate approved a budget resolution to pass Biden’s $1.9 trillion COVID relief package without any support from Republicans with Vice-President Kamala Harris delivering a tie-breaking vote.