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Sen. Bernie Sanders during a February hearing on Capitol Hill. Photo: Susan Walsh-Pool/Getty Images

Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) announced Monday he plans to offer an amendment to the COVID relief bill this week that aims to see the minimum wage raised to $15 an hour.

Why it matters: Sanders' pledge comes four days after the Senate parliamentarian ruled that the provision to increase the minimum wage to $15/hour can't be included under a reconciliation vote in the broader $1.9 trillion COVID relief package. Reconciliation requires only a simple 51-vote majority, rather than the usual 60 votes to pass major legislation.

  • Sen. Dick Durbin (Ill.), the No. 2 Senate Democrat, said Monday progressives' calls to overrule the parliamentarian wouldn't work and they needed to "think very seriously about dealing with the minimum wage in a different venue," per the Hill.

What he's saying: Sanders said in a Twitter post he thinks the Senate should ignore the parliamentarian’s advice, which he said was "wrong in a number of respects," but conceded that he wasn't sure that his view "is the majority view in the Democratic Caucus."

  • "Obviously, as soon as we can, we must end the filibuster that currently exists in the U.S. Senate," he added.
  • "Given the enormous crises facing working families today, we cannot allow a minority of the Senate to obstruct what the vast majority of the American people want and need."

Go deeper

DCCC ad campaign takes aim at Republicans who voted against relief package

Screen shot: DCCCVideo/via YouTube

The Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee will release 10 new digital ads targeting vulnerable Republicans who voted against President Biden's $1.9 trillion COVID relief package.

Why it matters: The ad buy is small, but a larger sign that Democrats think hitting Republicans on COVID relief is a winning message in swing congressional districts, especially as polling shows broad public support for the bill including among the GOP.

Feb 28, 2021 - Politics & Policy

Cedric Richmond: We won't wait on GOP for "insufficient" stimulus

Top Biden adviser Cedric Richmond told "Axios on HBO" the White House believes it has bipartisan support for a stimulus bill outside the Beltway.

  • "If our choice is to wait and go bipartisan with an insufficient package, we are not going to do that."

The big picture: The bill will likely undergo an overhaul in the Senate after House Democrats narrowly passed a stimulus bill this weekend, reports Axios' Kadia Goba.

Justice Department asks Supreme Court to block Texas abortion ban

Abortion rights activists rally at the Texas State Capitol on Sept. 11, 2021, in Austin, Texas. Photo: Jordan Vonderhaar/Getty Images

The Justice Department on Monday asked the Supreme Court to temporarily block Texas' near-total ban on abortions while federal courts consider its constitutionality.

The big picture: The court last month allowed the ban to take effect, rejecting an emergency application by abortion-rights groups. The law bars the procedure after cardiac activity is detected, as early as six weeks into pregnancy.