WASHINGTON, D.C. – The U.S. economy continued its descent towards a deep recession as nearly 3 million more Americans joined the unemployment ranks this week, bringing the eight-week total of jobless claims to a depressing 36 million plus. The latest UI numbers come on the heels of the Federal Reserve Chair’s stunning assessment that 40 percent of households with less than $40,000 in income lost a job in March. Meanwhile, the White House and its allies in Congress are staying the course on its failing economic strategy: more giveaways to multimillion-dollar corporations while demurring on desperately needed help for struggling small businesses, workers, and states.
“With each passing week, millions of American families are confronted with a new, uncertain reality,” said Kyle Herrig, president of Accountable.US. “Will they be able to put food on the table? Will they be able to pay rent? Will their government finally take decisive action to show they are paying attention? President Trump is failing these families. His mismanagement of this crisis and the administration’s incompetent response has made families less safe and less secure.”
NO SENSE OF URGENCY: While the latest UI figures make painfully clear that Washington has not done enough to bring economic relief to average Americans, the Trump administration and its Senate allies say they need to take a break. “We’re in no rush, we’re in no rush” on another coronavirus economic relief package, declared the President last Friday – the same day the unemployment rate tripled to 14.7 percent. White House economic adviser Larry Kudlow said they’re putting a hold on formal negotiations on more aid until June. The President’s top ally in the Senate was even blunter: “I don’t think we have yet felt the urgency of acting immediately.”
SMALL BUSINESSES LEFT BEHIND: The Trump SBA’s Paycheck Protection Program has been bungled since day one, offering red tape and rejection to struggling small business owners while rolling out the red carpet for large publicly-traded companies that have access to resources average shops do not. Despite the administration’s claims these issues of access have been fixed, a shocking new academic report estimates over 100,000 small businesses have permanently closed since the pandemic took off in March. Meanwhile, well over 400 publicly-traded firms or conflicted companies – some worth more than $100 million – have walked away with over a billion dollars in taxpayer money. It’s no wonder the Trump administration has shied away from transparency in this process.