Biden seeks support for economic rescue package | Daily News
Addressing first Town Hall as President:

Biden seeks support for economic rescue package

Vaccines available for all Americans by July end :
US President Joe Biden talks with CNN anchor Anderson Cooper as he participates in a CNN Town Hall at the Pabst Theatre in Milwaukee, Wisconsin on Tuesday. - AFP
US President Joe Biden talks with CNN anchor Anderson Cooper as he participates in a CNN Town Hall at the Pabst Theatre in Milwaukee, Wisconsin on Tuesday. - AFP

US: US President Joe Biden sidestepped a divided Congress and went straight to the nation Tuesday with a primetime televised Town Hall in Wisconsin seeking support for his $1.9 trillion economic rescue package.

"Now is the time we should spending. Now is the time to go big," Biden told the live CNN audience in Milwaukee, Wisconsin.

With lawmakers reeling from the aftermath of Donald Trump's impeachment acquittal, Biden used his first official trip away from Washington as President to address ordinary voters.

His stimulus package would more than double the previous measure passed by Congress, after intense debate, in December.

The administration says massive injections of money, including $1,400 cheques sent to many Americans, are vital to preventing a sluggish economic recovery from stalling altogether.

Another major goal of the spending spree is to boost the COVID-19 vaccine rollout -- a logistical, medical and financial challenge upon which Biden's entire first term may hang.

President Biden also said that all Americans will have access to COVID-19 vaccines before August.

Asked when all Americans would be vaccinated, Biden told a CNN town hall meeting with members of the public: “By the end of July this year.”

“By the end of July we'll have 600 million doses, enough to vaccinate every American,” he said.

Biden's choice of Wisconsin for the town hall was no coincidence: he won the battleground state by just 20,000 votes against Trump in November and it will feature prominently again in the 2022 midterms and 2024 Presidential race. In Wisconsin, he insisted that only the “fringes” are keeping the country apart, where in reality "it's not nearly as divided as we make it out to be."

His efforts seem to be paying off -- among voters at least, if not yet with congressional Republicans.

A Quinnipiac poll this month showed nearly 70 percent of Americans support the stimulus package, while a CNBC poll reported 64 percent believe the price tag is sufficient or not even enough. Only 36 percent said it was too much.

Biden himself is on a solid footing with nearly 55 percent average approval ratings. Trump may still hold a powerful grip over the Republican voter base but his final average approval rating on leaving office was a measly 38.6 percent.

- AFP