Amidst a resurgence in COVID-19 caseloads and continuing economic devastation from the pandemic, we urge Congress to enact legislation that focuses on the core measures necessary to provide additional fiscal relief as quickly as possible and no later than the end of this calendar year.
A bipartisan relief package should include—first and foremost—additional funding to fight the virus. We also endorse assistance to individuals and families, including extended federal government income relief to unemployed individuals, enhanced benefits to households who need help buying food, and measures to help people who are facing potential eviction and homelessness because of pandemic-related income loss. Legislation should include fiscal support to state and local governments, which face budget shortfalls as a result of the pandemic while they face emergency spending needs, including much needed funding for K-12 schools to open safely. Congress should also prioritize support to small businesses, as they continue to operate under reduced capacity restrictions, weakened consumer demand, and a high level of uncertainty.
The CARES Act that was passed with bipartisan support in March 2020 provided necessary relief to millions of Americans and helped the economy rebound more quickly than expected. Many of the Act’s key provisions have already expired but are still needed. Meanwhile, the pandemic resurges throughout the country. Our nation’s leaders should act on another round of fiscal relief now. At the same time, the administration should act aggressively to deploy the unspent resources it already has to combat the virus and support businesses. Our country and economy cannot wait until 2021.
Henry M. Paulson, Jr.
The Paulson Institute; Economic Strategy Group
The University of North Carolina; Economic Strategy Group
Melissa S. Kearney
The University of Maryland; Economic Strategy Group
Hoover Institution, Stanford University
James S. Crown
Henry Crown and Company
Mitchell E. Daniels, Jr.
Dr. Sue Desmond-Hellmann
Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and Google Ventures
JPMorgan Chase Institute
Timothy F. Geithner
Austan D. Goolsbee
The University of Chicago Booth School of Business
American Action Forum
Columbia Business School
Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis
Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget
N. Gregory Mankiw
National Urban League
Michael A. Nutter
Columbia University School of International and Public Affairs
James W. Owens
Center for American Progress
Alphabet and Google
Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Robert E. Rubin
Council on Foreign Relations
Robert K. Steel
Perella Weinberg Partners
Lawrence H. Summers
Thomas J. Wilson
The Allstate Corporation
Robert B. Zoellick