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    Saturday, June 10, 2023

    Biden signs resolution ending coronavirus national emergency

    President Joe Biden speaks during a meeting with the President's Council of Advisers on Science and Technology in the State Dining Room of the White House on April 4, 2023, in Washington. The U.S. national emergency to respond to the COVID-19 pandemic ended Monday, April 10, as Biden signed a bipartisan congressional resolution to bring it to a close after three years — weeks before it was set to expire alongside a separate public health emergency. (AP Photo/Patrick Semansky, File)

    WASHINGTON - President Joe Biden signed a resolution Monday formally ending the coronavirus national emergency President Donald Trump enacted in March 2020.

    Despite Biden telling Congress in January that he would end the health emergency in May, House Republicans passed the measure ending the national emergency under the Congressional Review Act, which allows Congress to overturn rules by federal agencies via a simple majority vote. House Democrats voted overwhelmingly against it.

    Ahead of the Senate vote in March, Senate Majority Leader Charles E. Schumer, D-N.Y., told colleagues that Biden would not veto the measure, according to a senior Democratic Senate source who spoke on the condition of anonymity to detail private conversations. It passed that chamber 68-23 in a largely symbolic vote.

    The coronavirus has killed more than a million people in the United States and it upended global economies.

    As the pandemic emergencies end, millions are poised to lose their Medicaid coverage. Five states started removing people from the expanded Medicaid rolls on April 1 - the first date allowed under a recent federal law - to cut off beneficiaries who no longer qualify for Medicaid or have not provided proof they still deserve the coverage. Nearly all other states will begin to remove people between May and July.

    The White House signaled last month the fight against the virus was moving into a new and less-disruptive chapter. A senior administration official told The Washington Post in March that "transitioning out of the emergency phase is the natural evolution of the COVID response." Several members of the White House COVID response team, including its COVID-19 response coordinator, Ashish Jha, are expected to leave the administration, according to sources.

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