Health Care

Biden declines to veto GOP-led measure to end COVID-19 emergency

President Biden will not veto a GOP-led effort to end the COVID-19 national emergency, Senate Majority Leader Charles Schumer (D-N.Y.) told Democratic senators on Wednesday.

A Senate Democratic source confirmed that Schumer informed senators of the decision. The move comes ahead of a planned vote in the upper chamber on the measure later in the day.

The bill would terminate the COVID-19 national emergency effective immediately. The Biden administration has said it would let it expire in mid-May.

“The President strongly opposes HJ Res 7, and the administration is planning to wind down the COVID national emergency and public health emergency on May 11. If this bill comes to his desk, however, he will sign it, and the administration will continue working with agencies to wind down the national emergency with as much notice as possible to Americans who could potentially be impacted,” a White House official said.

The move marks the second time in recent weeks where Biden sided with Republicans on legislation, having declined to veto a GOP-led measure to nix updates to Washington, D.C.’s, criminal code in early March.

The announcement also likely opens the door to a bigger tally among Democrats for the upcoming vote. 

Thirty-three Senate Democrats voted alongside every Republican in the D.C. crime bill vote, with almost every one of those decisions being made after Biden indicated his plans.

The move could also come at the expense of House Democrats as 197 of them voted to uphold the emergency last month. This follows a similar path to the lead-up of the crime measure as 173 House Democrats voted to side with the District and support the new bill.

Updated at 6:31 p.m.

Tags Joe Biden

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