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Capitol Report: Biden talks up restaurant relief program as he visits DC taco eatery on Cinco de Mayo

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President Joe Biden on Wednesday talked up a federal restaurant-relief program as he visited a Washington taco eatery — and took home some lunch.

In a Cinco de Mayo stop at Taqueria Las Gemelas, Biden highlighted a new $28.6 billion program that aims to assist eateries hard-hit by the coronavirus pandemic.

Read: Restaurants wait for chance to tap into $28.6 billion relief fund: ‘We will be one of the first ones in line’

The Restaurant Revitalization Fund, part of Democrats’ $1.9 trillion COVID-19 relief bill, began accepting applications on Monday.

“The restaurant industry was hurt so badly nationwide,” said the president, who left the DC shop with some tacos and enchiladas.

In later remarks at the White House, Biden said, “we want to make sure that our restaurants, bars and other dining establishments can staff back up.”

Signed into law by Biden in March, the American Rescue Plan also included $1,400 stimulus payments to Americans, as well as aid to state and local governments and billions of dollars for Paycheck Protection Program loans to small businesses.

Read: Biden signs $1.9 trillion stimulus bill into law, authorizing $1,400 checks and much more

Biden’s remarks from the White House came as the president is pushing lawmakers to approve a $2.3 trillion infrastructure plan and a $1.8 trillion package of child care, education and other social spending. Both proposals are facing stiff resistance from Republicans, who balk at the tax increases Biden has floated to pay for his plans.

Now see: McConnell predicts ‘zero’ Republican support for Biden jobs and families plan

Biden repeated on Wednesday that he’s open to compromise on a proposed hike in the corporate tax rate. But he said, “I’m not willing to not pay for what we’re talking about.”

The Dow Jones Industrial Average
DJIA,
+0.29%

hit a fresh intraday record on Wednesday afternoon and was on pace for an all-time closing high, despite concerns about rising inflation and the eventual pull back of flush monetary policy as the economy reopens in the wake of the pandemic.

Read: Market Snapshot

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