WASHINGTON, D.C. — Another 965,000 workers filed for unemployment last week — a troubling increase of 181,000 from last week — joining the more than 18 million Americans looking for work in the Trump recession. While the needs of struggling workers, states and small businesses are massive in scale, the stimulus bill passed late last month was watered down at the insistence of leader Mitch McConnell. It left much for Congress to do to achieve a real economic recovery for those other than millionaires and big corporations.
“Hundreds of thousands continue to get pink slips every week as even more small businesses go under. There’s no time for McConnell obstructionism as the new Congress and administration prepares to get long-overdue relief to families who’ve been neglected in the Trump recession,” said Jeremy Funk, spokesman for Accountable.US. “McConnell chose to do as little as possible for those hit hardest when he was in control, so it should be no added burden to get out of the way of those ready to rebuild the economy for everyone, not just the rich.”
COMPROMISE STIMULUS WAS ONLY A DOWN-PAYMENT: The compromise stimulus bill signed into law in December slashed the value of direct relief checks and unemployment insurance in half from what the CARES Act provided — leaving many families out in the cold without the means to pay for essentials like rent, food, and medicine. The bill denies much-needed aid to states and local communities that are essential for implementing public safety measures otherwise maintaining basic support for their populations amid the pandemic. The bill inexplicably does not extend the pause the CARES Act placed on student loan payments. The bill’s housing aid does not meet the estimated $70 billion in back rent coming due and only delays the looming eviction crisis by a month. Much more needs to be done, but Mitch McConnell has already set an obstructionist tone by blocking a strongly bipartisan bill passed in the U.S. House to boost stimulus checks to $2,000, an effort even supported by Donald Trump.