A large group of senior Wall Street executives, including David Solomon of Goldman Sachs and Stephen Schwarzman of Blackstone, backed Joe Biden’s $ 1.9 billion Recovery plan ahead of the crucial votes on the package in Congress.
In a letter to congressional leaders on both sides on Wednesday, more than 150 New York-based business leaders called for “immediate and large-scale federal legislation” to combat the fallout from the pandemic.
“Previous federal relief measures have been critical, but more needs to be done to put the country on the path to a strong and lasting recovery,” they wrote.
“Congress should act quickly and on a bipartisan basis to authorize a stimulus and relief package modeled on the US bailout package proposed by the Biden-Harris administration,” they added.
Support for Biden’s plan from some of the biggest names in America’s financial industry comes despite strong opposition from Republicans on Capitol Hill who believe the level of new spending is excessive.
Some economists – including Larry summers– Barack Obama’s economic adviser and Bill Clinton’s Treasury secretary – have also expressed doubts about Biden’s package, saying it could stoke unwanted inflationary pressures later this year.
Other major business lobby groups in Washington have expressed broad support for a new fiscal stimulus package, but argued it could be targeted at Americans who are struggling most, which would push the price down. global.
Wall Street CEOs who signed the letter on Wednesday made no such reservations, offering unqualified approval of the plan and highlighting the problems still plaguing the U.S. recovery. The signatories included Larry Fink of BlackRock and Ken Jacobs of Lazard, as well as senior corporate lawyers such as Rodgin Cohen of Sullivan & Cromwell and Martin Lipton of Wachtell Lipton.
“More than 10 million fewer Americans are working today than when the pandemic began, small businesses across the country are facing bankruptcy and schools are struggling to reopen,” they wrote.
“The most vulnerable Americans – including women, people of color and low-wage workers – are experiencing the worst of the pandemic, with unprecedented job losses, childcare burdens and food insecurity . States and cities have been crushed by the spending and lost revenues associated with the pandemic, ”they added.
The approval comes as the House of Representatives prepares to vote on Biden’s package later this week.
With little or maybe not even Republicans backing the plan, Democrats count on almost unanimous support within their ranks for it to pass. The Senate is expected to adopt the proposal in early March. There is no room for defections among Democrats in the upper house, which is evenly split between the two parties, with Vice President Kamala Harris casting decisive votes.
Biden’s stimulus package – his top priority since becoming president last month – includes direct payments worth $ 1,400 each to Americans earning up to $ 75,000 a year, an extension of unemployment benefits federal emergency until the end of August, an increase in the child tax credit and $ 350 billion in funding for states and local communities.