The coronavirus pandemic is the defining issue of the moment, and the United States’ unprecedented economic and health crises are largely the result of President Donald Trump’s failed leadership. The president urged states to reopen before it was safe to do so—and now, with tens of thousands of new COVID-19 cases daily, some states are being forced to close parts of their economy once again. Yet President Trump and Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell’s top priority has been to help shield corporations and big businesses from any responsibility from exposing people to the coronavirus.
With expanded unemployment benefits, small-business funds, and other economic necessities running out at the end of July, it’s now up to Congress and the White House to pass a stimulus package that will combat all aspects of the pandemic. So far, the White House and Senate majority cannot even agree on what should be included in such a package; the president and his congressional allies have left the American people in a precarious place by waiting until the last possible moment to begin negotiations with Democrats in the U.S. House of Representatives and Senate. Meanwhile, the House passed the comprehensive HEROES Act more than two months ago—only to have it ignored in the Senate.
The task ahead is clear: The White House and Congress must pass a bill that will help the American people through one of the most devastating health and economic disasters the country has ever seen. The following products, data, and resources from the Center for American Progress and CAP Action Fund are aimed specifically at congressional members and their staff to help guide them in the critical weeks ahead. This list will be updated as more resources become available.
- “STATEMENT: CAP’s Neera Tanden Says Senate Coronavirus Proposal Puts Trump’s Political Agenda Above American Lives”
Statement from Center for American Progress President and CEO Neera Tanden on the inadequacy of Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell’s stimulus proposal.
- “A New Strategy To Contain the Coronavirus: Lessons From the U.S. Northeast and Japan”
Early on in the pandemic, the strategy to contain the coronavirus was clear—yet none of the components were successfully implemented and are probably are no longer feasible in the near term. CAP highlights what a new strategy should look like.
- “Kicking Folks Out While They’re Down: How the Premature Lifting of Coronavirus Restrictions Is Increasing Evictions and Worsening the Homelessness Crisis”
With the expiration of a federal eviction moratorium, things are going from bad to worse for many Americans. Lawmakers must take measures that will meet ongoing, urgent housing needs and avert the forecasted “housing apocalypse” by providing the level of support and stability needed now, as the COVID-19 pandemic rages on, as well as over the long term, as the nation deals with its aftermath.
- “12 Million People Have Been Excluded From Emergency Increases in SNAP Benefits”
While Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell decided it was appropriate to increase the business lunch deduction from 50 percent to 100 percent, in more than half of all states, one-third or more of all SNAP households received no emergency benefits. It’s time for lawmakers to fix this.
- “Coronavirus Proposals Leave the Disability Community Behind”
To date, congressional efforts to combat the coronavirus have left out some of the most vulnerable people. This time around, Congress should provide and extend supports and services to the disability community.
- “Investing in Home and Community-Based Care During the Coronavirus Pandemic and Future Disasters”
Nursing homes account for some of the highest transmission sites and deaths due to COVID-19. It’s time for Congress to invest in community- and home-based care.
- “Ill-Considered Tax Cuts Will Not Help the Economy Recover From the Coronavirus Crisis”
Corporations and big businesses don’t need another handout. Congress should focus relief where it is most needed: toward workers who are out of work; self-employed workers who have lost income; states and communities facing budget shortfalls; families needing child care; and struggling small businesses.
- PowerPoint slide deck highlighting what is at stake and why Congress needs to tackle the entirety of the crisis in the next coronavirus relief package.
- “Memo: Democrats Should Only Support an Economic Package That Provides Stability and Addresses the True Economic Pain Americans Are Experiencing”
CAP Action memo on messaging and framing.
- “All Risk, No Reward: Identifying the Economic Fallout From Premature Reopenings”
Report examining the economic consequences of Trump’s push to reopen the economy too soon.
- “Recent Spikes in Coronavirus Cases Highlight Critical Need for More Federal Elections Funding”
State fact sheets on election funding for Arizona, Florida, Georgia, North Carolina, and South Carolina.
- “Federal Funding Is Essential To Saving State and Local Public Services”
51 (including Washington, D.C.) state-by-state fact sheets on the economic hardship likely to result from a lack of aid to state and localities.