Gov. Whitmer talks American Rescue Plan benefits for Michigan

Gov. Whitmer allows Michigan restuarants to reopen with capacity limits, curfew

Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer joined elected officials from Wisconsin and Florida Thursday to discuss the benefits of the newly passed American Rescue Plan during a virtual news conference.

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Live Stream @ 1:30 p.m.: President Biden signs $1.9T COVID-19 relief bill

Whitmer, joined Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett and St. Petersburg Florida Mayor Rick Kriseman, discussed the federal government’s approved $1.9 trillion virus aid package and its benefits for American families.

The House gave final congressional approval Wednesday to the sweeping package by a near party line 220-211 vote precisely seven weeks after Biden entered the White House and four days after the Senate passed the bill. In a win for President Biden and Democrats, the approved legislation goes far beyond stimulus checks -- but most Americans can expect a direct payment of $1,400 and for those out of work: $300 weekly federal emergency unemployment benefits have been extended through early September.

More: 3rd stimulus check update: When to expect $1,400 payment after Congress passes relief bill

Thursday’s virtual conference was hosted by Protect Our Care and, in addition to the elected officials, included appearances from 4th grade Maine teacher Cindy Soule, and small businesses owner Jessie Green from Pennsylvania.

The conference is taking place as Michigan, and much of the country, marks its one-year COVID anniversary.

More: Looking back on year of COVID pandemic: ‘Know and understand that tomorrow is not promised’

Biden immediately begins selling virus aid plan to public (AP)

The White House began highlighting the $1.9 trillion COVID relief bill immediately after it gained final congressional approval on Wednesday, wasting no time in selling the public on President Joe Biden’s first legislative victory.

The West Wing began an ambitious campaign to showcase the bill’s contents while looking to build momentum for the next, perhaps thornier, parts of the president’s sweeping agenda. Biden will sign the bill into law on Friday, but the White House didn’t wait, turning the bill signing into a three-day event.

The president tweeted moments after the House of Representatives passed the bill that “Help is here — and brighter days lie ahead.” He later told reporters that “This bill represents a historic victory for the American people,” while the White House also released a slickly produced video touting the passage, and Democrats on Capitol Hill staged an elaborate signing ceremony.

Biden will make the first prime-time address of his presidency on Thursday to mark the one-year anniversary of the COVID-19 lockdowns and will use the moment to pitch toward the future and how prospects will be improved by the nearly $2 trillion aid package.

Animating the public relations outreach is a determination to avoid repeating the mistakes from more than a decade earlier, when President Barack Obama’s administration did not fully educate the public about the benefits of its own economic recovery plan.

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About the Author:

Cassidy Johncox is a senior digital news editor covering stories across the spectrum, with a special focus on politics and community issues.