President BidenJoe BidenThe Hill’s Morning Report – Presented by Facebook – Biden to hit road, tout COVID-19 relief lawOregon senator takes center stage in Democratic filibuster debateThis week: Democrats eye next step after coronavirus relief bill win MORE on Monday went to the cameras to tout the COVID-19 relief package he signed into law last week as well as his administrations efforts to make it work.
Biden set a new goal of sending out 100 million relief checks in the next 10 days, and tapped an experienced economic adviser to oversee implementation of the massive coronavirus relief package likely to be a pinnacle of his time in office.
The steps reflect an effort by the Biden administration to quickly implement the $1.9 trillion relief bill by getting economic assistance to Americans, businesses, state and local governments and schools.
The Biden administration is embarking on a coordinated effort to tout the rescue package in states across the country this week to underscore its popularity across segments of the population and highlight the tangible aspects of the bill, including $1,400 direct payments and funding for vaccines and school reopening.
At the same time, the administration is under pressure to get assistance out as quickly as possible and Democrats are cognizant that swift implementation of the bill Bidens first major legislative accomplishment as president is critical to helping Americans and also important politically.
Its one thing to pass a historic piece of legislation like the American Rescue Plan and its quite another to implement it, Biden said in remarks from the White House. The devil is in the details. It requires fastidious oversight to make sure the relief arrives quickly, equitably and efficiently with no waste or fraud.
On Monday, Biden tapped Gene Sperling, who served as director of the National Economic Council under Presidents Obama and Clinton, to oversee the implementation of the massive legislation.
Sperling, who had been considered as a potential nominee for Office of Management and Budget director, brings a wealth of relevant government experience to the new role. Sperling was a key figure in the Obama administrations response to the 2008 financial crisis and helped oversee the bailout of the Detroit auto industry.
Those who have worked with Sperling describe him as intelligent and indefatigable qualities they say will serve him well in the new job.
My experience with Gene in the White House was he was tireless, extraordinarily attentive to detail, and exceptionally smart, said Phil Schiliro, legislative affairs director under Obama.
Kent Conrad, a former Democratic senator from North Dakota who chaired the Senate Budget Committee, said Sperling can be counted on to reach out to governors, mayors, and other stakeholders to ensure they have the resources they need and resolve issues when they emerge.
He will reach out to all of those constituencies and make certain that they have the assistance that they need and where things go wrong and they will go wrong, lets be realistic when [mistakes] occur, Gene will be all over it getting it corrected, said Conrad.
Biden said that Sperling would be source of constant communication, a source of guidance and support, and above all a source of accountability for all of us to get the job done.
The White House expects 158.5 million households to receive relief checks from the rescue package in total. The Treasury Department began sending out direct payments over the weekend and they are expected to go out with ease, given that the government has already distributed two rounds of payments.
Still other provisions of the legislation are more complicated and may take longer to implement, such as dolling out funds from a new grant program for restaurants and figuring out where to send assistance for schools that need help preparing to physically reopen. Tax experts also say that the government will be challenged to ensure that people receive tax relief for the first $10,200 in unemployment benefits they received last year.
Sperling, who is working remotely from California for the time being, is expected to coordinate closely with officials in the White House as well as Cabinet leaders like Education Secretary Miguel CardonaMiguel CardonaNew Education secretary should prioritize implementation of Pell Grants for people in prisonBiden signs .9 trillion relief bill into lawReimagining the future of public education after COVIDMORE and Treasury Secretary Janet YellenJanet Louise YellenThe Hill’s Morning Report – Presented by Facebook – Biden to hit road, tout COVID-19 relief lawTreasury Secretary says economy can have ‘near full employment’ next yearDemocrats urge IRS to help unemployment recipients use tax breakMORE.
He will work with the heads of White House policy councils and key leads at federal agencies so we can get funds out the door quickly, maximize its impact, accelerate the work the administration is doing to crush COVID and rescue our economy, White House press secretary Jen PsakiJen PsakiBiden: Cuomo ‘investigation is underway and we should see what it brings us’Gun control groups focus all efforts on SenateCats, dogs, birds, horses and even a raccoon: A brief history of White House petsMORE told reporters. The president felt it was important to have a point person who could, of course, pull all these levers.
Biden is preparing to travel to Delaware County, Pa., on Tuesday as part of what the White House is calling the Help is Here tour. Vice President Harris visited a vaccination site in Las Vegas on Monday and first lady Jill BidenJill BidenThe Hill’s Morning Report – Presented by Facebook – Biden to hit road, tout COVID-19 relief lawCats, dogs, birds, horses and even a raccoon: A brief history of White House petsBiden to sit down for ABC News interview as COVID-19 relief promotion tour beginsMORE traveled to Burlington, N.J., to visit a local elementary school. Biden has set the goal of physically reopening most schools in his first 100 days as president.
We are going to safely open schools. We are going to get people back to work. We are going to lift up the families who are struggling to get by, the first lady said in brief remarks outside the school Monday afternoon.