- The House approved a $900 billion COVID-19 stimulus package that was combined with a $1.4 trillion government funding deal on Monday.
- Among the provisions in the more than 5,000-page package is a stipulation that would make illegal streaming a felony.
- The omnibus package also gives Israel and Jordan $500 million each. It also includes funding for the southern border wall, broadband, and an increase in money for the military.
- The bill is now headed to President Trump for final approval.
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The House of Representatives and the Senate approved a $900 billion stimulus agreement on Monday that would give $600 checks and $300 federal weekly unemployment benefits (for 11 weeks) to individuals. The stimulus relief was combed with a $1.4 trillion government funding omnibus bill, which includes a wide range of provisions – including making illegal streaming a felony.
Earlier this month, Sen. Thom Tillis introduced a similar bill called the Protecting Lawful Streaming Act.
“The shift toward streaming content online has resulted in criminal streaming services illegally distributing copyrighted material that costs the US economy nearly $30 billion every year, and discourages the production of creative content that Americans enjoy,” Tillis said in a statement.
In addition, the omnibus bill includes $1.4 billion for President Donald Trump’s southern border wall, removes prohibitions on the use of federal funds for the transportation used to help desegrated schools, gives a 3% increase for military spending, authorizes funds for a Smithsonian Women’s History Museum and the National Museum of the American Latino, and increases funding for broadband.
The text of the omnibus bill reads: “$500,000,000 shall be for the Israeli Cooperative 6 Programs.” Funding for other foreign countries – including $500 million for Jordanian defense spending and $33 million for Venezuela’s democracy programs – was also included in the bill.
The bill also has provisions for dealing with the reincarnation of the Dalai Lama.
Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez said that members of Congress did not get the text for the omnibus bill, which is over 5,000 pages long, to actually read until a few hours before they were set to vote.
“It’s not good enough to hear about what’s in the bill. Members of Congress need to see & read the bills we are expected to vote on,” she said. “I know it’s ‘controversial’ & I get in trouble for sharing things like this, but the people of this country deserve to know. They deserve better.”
The bill is now headed to President Donald Trump for final approval. He is expected to sign later this week.