Almost a year into the coronavirus pandemic, and with millions of Americans still waiting for some kind of relief, the Senate has voted to move forward with a budget resolution that would allow a measure to pass with only a simple majority.
The 50-49 vote essentially sets the stage for debate on a budget resolution and means that a COVID-19 stimulus package could ultimately be passed with no Republican support. The House is expected to vote on a similar measure today.
Since the inauguration of President Joe Biden last month, Democrats have said that time is of the essence in passing the next relief package, as too many Americans can’t afford to wait. “I am glad that Senate Democrats took a major first step today in bringing desperately needed big, bold health and economic relief to the American people,” Chuck Schumer, the Senate majority leader, said in a statement.