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Ten GOP Senators Counter Biden’s $1.9 Trillion Relief Plan, Request Meeting

   DailyWire.com
Senator Susan Collins, a Republican from Maine, wears a protective mask while walking through the Senate Subway at the U.S. Capitol in Washington, D.C., U.S., on Thursday, Jan. 28, 2021. Democrats are preparing to move forward quickly on coronavirus relief measures with or without Republican help after early resistance from moderates to President Biden's $1.9 trillion proposal.
Sarah Silbiger/Bloomberg via Getty Images

Appealing to “bipartisanship and unity,” a group of GOP senators wrote to President Joe Biden on Sunday to request a meeting where they could provide a counter-offer to his $1.9 trillion COVID-19 relief proposal.

“In the spirit of bipartisanship and unity, we have developed a COVID-19 relief framework that builds on prior COVID assistance laws, all of which passed with bipartisan support,” ten GOP senators told Biden in the letter. “Our proposal reflects many of your stated priorities, and with your support, we believe that this plan could be approved quickly by Congress with bipartisan support. We request the opportunity to meet with you to discuss our proposal in greater detail and how we can work together to meet the needs of the American people during this persistent pandemic.”

The counter-proposal, which has not yet been released, would be roughly a third of the cost of Biden’s plan, according to The Washington Post. It would include $160 billion for health care providers, vaccine development, distribution, testing, tracing, treatment, and supplies, as well as a “round of economic impact payments,” wrote the GOP senators.

Those payments would come in the form of $1,000 direct check payments, and reduce the cut-off for eligibility, reports The Washington Post. In previous packages, eligibility for direct payments started to phase out for people with an annual income of $75,000.

Furthermore, the counter-proposal includes unspecified resources for re-opening schools and providing child care, a “critical component to getting Americans back to work.”

The plan would also extend the federal unemployment benefits boost at $300 per week — the current level — for an unspecified amount of time. The Biden administration has proposed extending the benefits at $400 through the end of September 2021, per CNBC.

The group of Republican senators who signed the letter include: Susan Collins (R-ME), Lisa Murkowski (R-AK), Bill Cassidy (R-LA), Mitt Romney (R-UT), Rob Portman (R-OH), Shelley Moore Capito (R-WV), Todd Young (R-IN), Jerry Moran (R-KS), Mike Rounds (R-SD), and Thom Tillis (R-NC). The group could collectively provide enough votes to overcome a Senate filibuster, should Democrats actually agree to their proposal.

“In 2020, Members of the House and Senate and the previous Administration came together on a bipartisan basis five times to direct the resources of the federal government toward combatting the urgent COVID-19 pandemic,” the group wrote. “Each of these laws received the support of members from both political parties. With your support, we believe Congress can once again craft a relief package that will provide meaningful, effective assistance to the American people and set us on a path to recovery.”

“We recognize your calls for unity and want to work in good faith with your Administration to meet the health, economic, and societal challenges of the COVID crisis,” they concluded.

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