President Joe Biden’s US$1.9 trillion ($2.56 trillion) Covid-19 relief bill cleared its final congressional hurdle Wednesday, with the House passing the bill on a 220-to-211 vote, sending it to the president for his signature.

The vote caps a nearly two-month sprint from the time Biden first unveiled his American Rescue Plan, through tough negotiations in the Senate to its final approval largely in the form it was first proposed. Biden plans to sign the legislation on Friday.

The bill is a major political victory for the new president, displaying his influence over a Democratic Party in control of Congress by the thinnest of margins. At the same time, the partisan divide over the bill foreshadows the difficulty Biden will have in enacting the multi-trillion dollar, longer-term economic program he wants later this year.

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