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Congresswoman Escobar Votes to Pass Budget Resolution, A Key Tool to Accelerate Passing Coronavirus Relief for El Paso Families

Today, Congresswoman Veronica Escobar (TX-16) voted to pass H. Con. Res. 11, FY 2021 Budget Resolution. This budget resolution is a key tool to accelerate passing the robust coronavirus (COVID-19) relief that El Paso families, workers, and small businesses need to combat the pandemic and strengthen the economy.

“The COVID-19 pandemic and economic crisis has devastated our community, and El Paso’s hardworking families need to know that help is on the way,” said Congresswoman Escobar. “More than 100,000 El Pasoans have been infected, over 1,700 have died, and our community faces a devastating unemployment rate of over eight percent. We must act now to avoid further devastation, which is why I joined my colleagues to pass this budget resolution to allow us to move forward in a hopefully bipartisan way and work with the Biden administration to deliver the urgently needed relief that El Paso families need.”

In Congress, there is strong precedent for reconciliation bills, which have been passed on a bipartisan basis 17 times in recent years, including for the bipartisan, landmark Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP). Democrats hope and expect that Republicans in Congress will support assistance that will bring relief to the communities they represent.  Passing this budget does not preclude adopting Republican suggestions that would strengthen the package.  But it does ensure that Congress can move forward in a timely way and meet El Paso families’ urgent needs.   

The budget resolution passed today is an essential first step in Congress’s efforts to deliver the comprehensive, strategic, and science-based relief laid out in President Joe Biden’s American Rescue Plan:

  • Beat the virus and safely reopen schools: The plan will mount a national vaccination program that includes setting up community vaccination sites nationwide. It will also take complementary measures to combat the virus, including scaling up testing and tracing, addressing shortages of personal protective equipment and other critical supplies, investing in high-quality treatments and addressing health care disparities. The plan will also make the investments necessary to safely reopen schools.

  • Deliver immediate relief to working families bearing the brunt of the crisis: The plan will provide direct assistance to households across America by $1,400 per person, bringing the total (including the $600 down payment enacted in December) to $2,000. The plan will also provide direct housing and nutrition assistance to families struggling to get by, expand access to safe and reliable child care and affordable health care, extend and expand Unemployment Insurance so American workers can pay their bills and give families with children as well as childless workers a boost through enhanced tax credits.

  • Support communities struggling with the economic fallout: The plan will provide crucial support for the hardest-hit small businesses, especially those owned by entrepreneurs from racial and ethnic backgrounds that have experienced systemic discrimination. The plan also provides crucial resources to protect the jobs of first responders, frontline public health workers, teachers, transit workers, and other essential workers that all Americans depend on.
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