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Biden: ‘devastating consequences’ of Trump block on pandemic relief

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WASHINGTON (AFP) – US President-elect Joe Biden warned Saturday of “devastating consequences” if President Donald Trump continues to delay signing a COVID-19 economic relief bill passed by Congress.

Biden spoke out as millions of Americans saw their jobless benefits expire after Trump threw a long-awaited pandemic aid package into doubt – demanding lawmakers more than triple the $600 direct payments to US taxpayers.

“This abdication of responsibility has devastating consequences. Today, about 10 million Americans will lose unemployment insurance benefits,” Biden said in a statement.

The stimulus measure is wrapped up with a $1.4 trillion funding bill, without which the government will be forced to shut down at midnight today.

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