Demand Progress will oppose, and will urge representatives and senators to oppose, any stimulus bill that does not include essential measures to support the millions of ordinary Americans struggling during the coronavirus crisis. These include:
- More money for the unemployed;
- Money for the USPS;
- Strong rules to provide voters with an option to vote by mail in November;
- Aid for states and cities;
- A freeze on rents, mortgages, and utility shutoffs;
- Requirements that large companies maintain their payrolls, health care for those who don’t have insurance, and an Essential Worker Bill of Rights.
“Democratic leadership in the House and Senate appears on the verge of cutting a historically disastrous deal with Donald Trump and Mitch McConnell,” said Demand Progress executive director David Segal. “They are considering backing a bill that doesn’t include aid for cities and towns or for the unemployed, doesn’t include help for the postal service, and doesn’t provide vote by mail for the November election, among other crucial protections. These measures are critical to helping Americans who have been devastated economically as well as to safeguarding our democracy.”
“Democrats must use their leverage while they have it. I was a state representative in Rhode Island during the 2008 crisis, and I remember waiting for a mythical ‘second stimulus’ that never manifested — even though the federal government was run by Democrats. This led to cuts to critical state and city functions and to undue suffering that easily could have been alleviated by federal action. If Democrats don’t act now, they will likely be responsible for even more severe generalized despair,” said Segal.
“Democrats have leverage and the power to stand up for the American people during this dire time. If we are to escape this public health crisis, recover economically, and ensure that faith in our democracy endures, bold action from Washington is necessary. They will be judged by the public—now and by history—based on how hard they are willing to fight for ordinary Americans during this unprecedented crisis.”