People let go of work or those with severe health conditions like heart disease and diabetes are close to going two weeks without the enhanced unemployment benefits that expired on July 31, 2020.
Why is that?
Because Republicans in the Senate and the White House do not care about the plight of the American worker.
First, they procrastinated for two and a half months while the House of Representatives, under Democratic leadership passed the Heroes Act which provided $3.4 trillion dollars to:
- Extend the enhanced unemployment program of $600 a week payments.
- Extend the eviction moratorium.
- Provide funds for schools to open safely.
- Appropriate monies for states to take care of budget contractions and pay for essential workers.
- Pay for greater COVID 19 testing and medical expenses associated with the Coronavirus.
- Help pay for election security and the processing of mail-in ballots through the postal service.
- Give people food stamp (SNAP) aid.
When the Republican Senate leaders finally unveiled their Senate plan (one where it was revealed 15 to 20 of that caucus were ready to vote against) with days to go before the enhanced unemployment insurance was due to expire, it was a less than a third of what the Democrats proposed. It reduced the enhanced unemployment payments to $200 a week, did not provide as much funding for schools and COVID testing, and did not allocate any monies for state/local governments, the eviction moratorium, or election security.
How do those legislative nuggets help the American People combat the Coronavirus and overcome economic and food insecurity?
To make matters worse, the divided Republicans waited to the last minute to start negotiating with Democrats.
Now people are starting to suffer because the Republicans, the group that Steve Benen in his book, Imposters branded the “Post-Policy Party” have failed again in their ability to govern.
This evening, negotiations between the Democrats and the White House yielded no concrete movement towards compromise legislation on the next phase of COVID relief.
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, after concluding discussions with White House Chief of Staff Mark Meadows and Treasury Secretary Steve Munchin, explained that the White House is not interested in helping state governments, fully extending the enhanced unemployment program, fully funding schools, or attending to election security.
Please watch the video below:
The heartless and vacillating Republicans, after six months of the country going through the hell of the Coronavirus, still do not get it.
The Democratic National Committee (DNC) has released a fact sheet (please click here to read the document) which details how the Trump Administration and its Fox Island-Trump Zone allies in the Congress committed gross missteps since the beginning of the Coronavirus that have harmed the economic viability of the country and the health and welfare of the American People.
In their fact sheet, for example, the DNC points out that people out of work in Arizona without the enhanced unemployment benefits only received $240 in payments this week.
Think about what $240 instead of $840 will get a person per week.
Can anyone live on that income when there is no job to return to or if someone is too much of a health risk to leave their home?
What would they prioritize with such a pittance in funding? Food? Medication? Clothes for the children? Gas for the car? The rent? The electric bill?
How much can $960 a month in regular Arizona unemployment insurance get an individual or someone supporting a family on their own?
This reduction in aid is exasperated, as the DNC has pointed out because food prices have started to rise.
The DNC also pointed out that the administration’s mishandling of the Coronavirus and the economic fallout has made the situation worse and the prospects for a faster recovery more difficult.
This morning, the July jobs numbers were released. 1.8 million jobs were created and the unemployment rate is at 10.2 unemployment. Compared to the 4.8 million jobs that returned in June, the labor market, with the COVID 19 surge, is stagnating.
This economic reversal is another example of how Republicans have mismanaged the pandemic and economic stewardship of the country.
The need for COVID 19 relief remains urgent.
On the new jobs report, DNC Spokesperson Veronica Yoo commented that:
“Today’s jobs report is another reminder that it didn’t have to be this bad — Trump failed to respond to the coronavirus quickly or effectively, and his incompetence cost many Arizonans their health, their jobs, and for far too many, their lives. Cases spiked this summer, yet Trump’s continued failure to lead has now left many working families without the continued support they need to deal with this crisis and pay for rent, food and other necessities. At every turn, Arizonans are paying the price for Trump’s ineffectiveness and failures.”
Arizona Democratic Party Spokesperson Tyler Cherry issued a statement which read:
“Today’s jobs report is yet another reminder that it didn’t have to be this bad. Thanks to Donald Trump and Doug Ducey’s failed pandemic response, the unemployment rate remains in the double digits and hundreds of thousands of Arizonans are still out of work. But instead of working to pass enhanced unemployment insurance and implementing a national testing strategy, Trump is hitting the links at his golf course and getting into petty Twitter fights. Five long months into a historic recession, Trump is still mismanaging the pandemic response, prioritizing relief for corporations over working families, and failing to deliver on a school reopening strategy that keeps children, teachers, and families safe. Arizonans can’t afford four more years of this chaos. We need a president who will get us back to work and help us build back better — that president is Joe Biden.”
Trump and Republican science-denying reactionaries have let Americans suffer because of their inability to govern or care about the people they are supposed to serve.
With the job market stagnating, the economy collapsing, and the pandemic not being fully addressed by the Administration, the people have it in their power to correct the course the Republicans have taken this country in 88 days.
- General Election Day is on November 3. 2020. Please see the below graphic for all-important voting dates.
- Please check your voter registration at vote.
- Register/sign up for the Permanent Early Voting List (PEVL) in Arizona or any state that allows early or absentee balloting and mail. Arizona residents can sign up at vote.
- Arizona residents, mail your General Election ballot by October 28, 2020, for the November 3, 2020 election. With recent issues with the Post Office, you should consider mailing them out by October 23, 2020.
- Check-in with the Secretary of State’s office where you live to verify your mail-in ballot was received, processed, verified, and counted.
- Know the voter ID requirements in your state.
- If you can, support Clean Election Candidates with a small contribution.
- Also, please remember to stay informed on all the candidates and vote for all the offices on the ballot.
- Also, remember to research all the ballot initiatives, sign to get them on the ballot if you support the measure, and vote on them as well.