Biden unveils plan to help US economy recover after battering from COVID-19 pandemic

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US President-elect Joe Biden Thursday revealed a proposal worth close to $2 trillion to kickstart the country’s economy that has been battered by the coronavirus pandemic.

The “American Rescue Plan” is meant to change the course of the pandemic, build a bridge towards economic recovery, and invest in racial justice, the plan published said.

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Biden, who is set to take over the White House on Jan. 20, published his $1.9 trillion plan shortly after the Labor Department released a report that showed unemployment application filings as the highest since August.

Although some economists saw the recent negative numbers as driven by the recent renewal of supplemental jobless benefits, they said it raised the risk of further job losses in January after nonfarm payrolls slumped in December for the first time in eight months.

The coronavirus has forced thousands of restaurants and businesses to close their doors.

On Thursday, Biden pledged to propose more stimulus checks for American taxpayers. This would be the third batch of checks after President Donald Trump’s administration oversaw the distribution of a one-time $1,200 payment for many and the second payment of $600 per individual.

Many Democrats and even Trump lobbied for $2,000 checks.

Biden proposed $1,400 stimulus checks, and now that Democrats will control both Congress and Senate, the incoming administration will hope for speedy progress.

This will depend on how much time lawmakers spend on the impeachment trial of Trump, who was impeached for an unprecedented second time on Wednesday.

“President-elect Biden’s $1.9 trillion American Rescue Plan is ambitious, but achievable, and will rescue the American economy and start beating the virus. Congress should act expeditiously to help working families, communities, and small businesses persevere through the pandemic,” a fact sheet from the Biden transition team said.

Biden criticized the current coronavirus vaccination efforts as “not sufficient to quickly and equitably vaccinate the vast majority of the US population.”

To change course, Biden's plan will look to invest $20 billion in a national vaccination program in partnership local governments.

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- with agencies