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After days of partisan tension, the Senate late Wednesday approved a massive $2.2 trillion coronavirus relief package aimed at beating back the pandemic and directing immediate economic aid to Americans who are losing their jobs by the millions as businesses close their doors to slow the spread of the disease.
The bill is expected to pass the House of Representatives overwhelmingly and be signed by President Trump within days.
If enacted, the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act (CARES Act) will be the single most expensive piece of legislation in U.S. history. To put the size in context, that’s more than double the cost of the entire New Deal, even when adjusted for inflation.
In this image from video, Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., speaks on the Senate floor at the U.S. Capitol in Washington, Saturday, March 21, 2020. (Senate Television via AP)
The $2.2 trillion of new spending in the bill is about 10 percent of the United States’ yearly GDP and nearly half of what the