Washington (January 14, 2021) – Senator Edward J. Markey (D-Mass.) released the following statement on President-elect Joe Biden’s emergency coronavirus relief package.
“This proposal shows that President-elect Joe Biden is ready to hit the ground running on Day 1. It makes immediate and robust relief for American families and workers the top priority for the new Biden-Harris administration.
“Massachusetts mayors and city managers have now gone nearly ten months without substantial direct aid from the federal government. The $350 billion included in this plan will go a long way to keeping our first responders on the job and to distribute the coronavirus vaccine. And with nearly 36,000 Massachusetts workers filing for unemployment for the first time this past week alone, an extension of unemployment insurance and additional rental assistance is welcome news. The $1,400 in direct cash assistance is a down payment that will help families make rent, put food on the table, and pay the utility bills after Senate Republicans blocked that additional funding back in December. But we must still pass my legislation with Senator Bernie Sanders to provide $2,000 monthly payments to working people through the duration of the pandemic.
“After months of silence from the Trump administration, I am pleased to see President Biden outline a life-saving national vaccination plan that will help our communities develop distribution centers, mobile vaccination and testing sites, and contact tracing programs. I look forward to learning more about the Biden administration’s plans to quickly get shots in the arm of every person in our country.
“On Inauguration Day, we have the opportunity to begin in earnest an historic and aggressive rescue mission for American families and our economy. The Senate will have to master the art of multi-tasking as we pass this long overdue relief legislation and hold Donald Trump accountable through an impeachment trial. We need justice for everyone responsible for the Capitol insurrection, and we also need justice for the workers and families suffering because of this pandemic.”