November 19 2020 | Member Statements

AESG Member Statement in Support of Immediate Pandemic Relief

Aspen Economic Strategy Group


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

Erskine Bowles
The University of North Carolina; Economic Strategy Group

Melissa S. Kearney
The University of Maryland; Economic Strategy Group

Ben Bernanke
Brookings Institution

Lanhee Chen
Hoover Institution, Stanford University

Kenneth Chenault
General Catalyst

Dave Cote
Vertiv Holdings

James S. Crown
Henry Crown and Company

Mitchell E. Daniels, Jr.
Purdue University

Dr. Sue Desmond-Hellmann
Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and Google Ventures

Diana Farrell
JPMorgan Chase Institute

Jason Furman
Harvard University

Timothy F. Geithner
Warburg Pincus

Austan D. Goolsbee
The University of Chicago Booth School of Business

Douglas Holtz-Eakin
American Action Forum

Glenn Hubbard
Columbia Business School

Joel Kaplan

Neel Kashkari
Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis

Maya MacGuineas
Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget

N. Gregory Mankiw
Harvard University

Marc Morial
National Urban League

Janet Murguía

Michael A. Nutter
Columbia University School of International and Public Affairs

James W. Owens

John Podesta
Center for American Progress

Ruth Porat
Alphabet and Google

James Poterba
Massachusetts Institute of Technology

Penny Pritzker
PSP Partners

Bruce Reed
Civic LLC

Robert E. Rubin
Council on Foreign Relations

Margaret Spellings
Texas 2036

Robert K. Steel
Perella Weinberg Partners

Lawrence H. Summers
Harvard University

Mark Weinberger

Thomas J. Wilson
The Allstate Corporation

Robert B. Zoellick
Brunswick Group

Income Inequality and Labor Market, Social Policy and Education, Tax and Budget