Transcript for COVID-19 relief bill moves to Senate
Of course, Americans waiting on vaccinations, millions also waiting for economic help in this pandemic chlgt at this hour, the senate is now debating the president's covid relief bill and those $1,400 checks for most Americans. We reported here there has been a change in those checks, so, Mary Bruce asking the president about that just today. And vice president kamala Harris and the tiebreaking moment that opened this whole debate. Will that become a sign of the times in this 50/50 senate? Here's Mary tonight. Reporter: Tonight, president Biden's massive $1.9 trillion covid relief bill has finally made its way to the senate floor. In a sign of the divisions gripping Washington, all Republicans voting against moving forward. Vice president kamala Harris stepping in to break the tie. On this vote, the yays are 50, the nays are 50. The senate being equally divided, the vice president votes in the affirmative, and the motion to proceed is agreed to. Reporter: The bill includes $160 billion for testing and vaccinations, help for small businesses and $1,400 checks to people making up to $75,000 a year. For those making up to $80,000, a slightly smaller check. It's less than what Biden wanted. Are you comfortable with having to limit the direct payments? Yes. Reporter: And enhanced unemployment benefits will not expire at the end of August, a month sooner than Biden had hoped. Mary Bruce live from the white house tonight. And Mary, the senate divided 50/50, but the president knows what the polls are showing, that this stimulus bill still has broad support across the but in Washington tonight, as you point out, senate Republicans, senate Democrats divided 50/50 and it would appear that Republicans, at least some of them, are trying to deliberately slow this down? Reporter: David, Republicans still insist this bill is just too expensive and now Republicans are intent on delaying this process. Tonight, they are insisting that the senate clerk read aloud all 628 pages of this bill. It could take up to ten hours. But democratic leader chuck Schumer is adamant they are getting this done this week and once the president signs the bill, well, then those direct payments, those checks, could start going out within days. David? Mary Bruce, thank you.
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