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The chairwoman of the House Financial Services Committee said that she sees a need for an additional stimulus package to help with the economic fallout from the outbreak of the novel coronavirus and COVID-19 pandemic.
This would be on top of the massive $2 trillion economic rescue package Congress just approved.
The US economy has already begun to reel from the effects of the pandemic, including a sudden spike in those Americans seeking unemployment compensation as the nation’s unemployment rate spiked upward, with 3.3 million Americans reporting job loss, exceeding expert forecasts and breaking records going back to 1982.
In the United States, there have been 125,308 reported cases of the disease, and 2,246 deaths, according to the most recent figures.
Rep. Maxine Waters (D-Calif), chairwoman of the financial business panel, cited a need to do more to help those at the lowest income levels get by in these uncertain times.
“We have people who work every day who have minimum wages. When they get laid off, when they get fired they don’t have any cushion. They have nowhere to turn, and they need to not only put food on the table. They need to put gasoline in the car. They have debt. And so what I did in my plan was I made sure that, Number One, we took care of all renters,” Waters said. “This plan only takes care of renters that are government assisted. But we have people who are living in units that are owned by landlords, may be units of six, 12, 18 units and these landlords have mortgages to pay and they need to be paid. We don’t want them to evict anybody, but we need to create a facility in which we pay landlords who do not evict. That has to be in the next plan. We make sure we cover those that need that rent assistance.
“In addition to that, I have in my plan that the credit bureaus cannot basically diminish your credit ratings. And so that’s not in this plan. Also I have in my plan basically paying the bills, credit cards, other kinds of things that low income people have debt that needs to be paid. So we’re going to be looking at all of that,” Waters added. “We’re going to be looking more at our small businesses. I think this plan is very good for small businesses, but we’ve got to do more. We have people who provide the catering service for them. I have a woman who called me and she’s pretty desperate. I’m going to do everything I can to look out for these small businesses. We still have people who are in their homes hungry. We have one woman who called, couldn’t take her medicine because she had no food in her home, and so we just took her some food and said here’s some food, we’re going to get more food to you tomorrow, but today here’s enough food for you for a couple of days. Take your medicine, don’t be sick. And so everybody’s working. I’m going to put into the next bill much of what was not covered in this bill.
“And I know that the president has gotten away with a lot of lying about what is going to happen with the defense act, and he said that he was going to, first of all, invoke it,” Waters said, referring to a Korean War-era law which gives the president authority to press industry into manufacturing needed items. “He did not. He waited until the heat was on him, and then he lied on some of the big businesses that he had he had an agreement with, that he really didn’t have.”
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