The plan calls for $2 trillion in spending, but after excluding stimulus payments that would be made to individuals almost half of the money in the bill would not be spent until fiscal year 2022 or later. Biden often speaks with nostalgia about his working relationships with GOP leaders during that less polarizing time when negotiation was the rule rather than the exception.
Democrats have promised to speedily deliver the relief package in the next two weeks and paved the way for a vote that will allow the plan to be passed without adjustments to accommodate Republicans who oppose it.
In this first glimpse of Biden's presidential salesmanship, he has not been shy about calling out Republicans who are wary of supporting his American Rescue Plan, despite its popularity - urging them to offer their ideas for potential compromise.
Biden toured a Pfizer vaccine manufacturing plant in Portage, Michigan, amid efforts to ramp up production, with only about 15% of the US population vaccinated against the coronavirus so far. "Let me ask them, 'What would they have me cut?"
"If individuals didn't receive a payment - or if they didn't receive the full amounts - they may be eligible to claim the Recovery Rebate Credit and must file a 2020 tax return", the IRS said in a recent news release. Jersey City would get $135 million and Trenton $68 million.
Of the $130 billion in the bill for K-12 schools, only 5 percent ($6 billion) would be spent this fiscal year.
Included in the House bill is a controversial proposal to gradually raise the federal minimum wage, now set at $7.25 an hour, to $15 by 2025. Moderate Democratic Sens. Kyrsten Sinema of Arizona and Joe Manchin of West Virginia have already signaled their opposition to that provision - and with the Senate divided 50-50, Biden can not afford to lose a single member in his caucus. Congress' budget scorekeeper estimated that the minimum-wage hike would cost about 1.4 million jobs, though it would also lift about 900,000 people out of poverty. "We will meet this deadline", he said in a Friday letter to Democrats.
House Democrats are pushing for a vote at the end of next week, and its passage would send the bill to the Senate for consideration. On Friday, House GOP Whip Steve Scalise (R-La.) vowed to meet with Republicans in the lower chamber to discuss how to combat the almost $2 trillion package.