Well, well, well, look who decided to do their jobs. After a contentious few days of disagreeing on what tf should be included in the coronavirus bill, it is starting to look like Democrats, Republicans and the White House have agreed that economic collapse occasioned by a global pandemic should have some sort of financial remedy.
Democrats received some heat after rejecting the original coronavirus bill drafted by Republicans, but it looks as though their move has paid off. Revisions have been made that will support working people and, stay with me here, not give a blank check to big businesses.
Gotta love when your government is like, “UGH okay, FINE, we’ll consider the value of human lives as opposed to the value of money, a concept that is literally made up.”
Passed by the Senate late last night, the final product is the largest economic stimulus in modern history. Even bigger than 2009.
So, what exactly is included in this bad boy? I’m gonna break that down for you, hon. No, no, it’s really no problem. I’ve been able to set aside some time in my VERY busy quarantined schedule. Had to postpone sitting in my room and staring at the wall/screaming for this. You’re welcome.
The $500 Billion Loan Program for Businesses Will Have A Babysitter
The main ish Dems had with the Republican’s bill was how it gave so much to businesses and appeared to allow the Trump Admin to decide willy nilly which businesses get what amount, which they cannot be trusted to do since exchanging cash for political favors is one of Trump’s favorite past times.
Now, the “corporate slush fund” at least has some checks and balances. There will likely be an appointed inspector and congressional committee which will oversee the funds. theoretically, this means big biz can’t just use the bailouts to give themselves raises and buy back their stocks (**cough post-2008 recession cough**) instead of hiring back their workers.
It also means Trump can’t just be like, “$500 billion to Trump hotels and none for Gretchen Wieners anyone else.” In fact, Minority Leader Sen. Chuck Schumer’s office announced they secured a provision that will “prohibit businesses controlled by the President, Vice President, Members of Congress, and heads of Executive Departments from receiving loans or investments from Treasury programs.” We love to see it.
Municipalities will also have access to this fund
Unemployment Is Getting A Glow Up
Idk if you heard, but coronavirus is ruining everything and has led to a lot of people getting laid off. A massive 3.3 million people filed for unemployment last week. Our programs are not equipped for this kind of crisis. It’s almost like government-funded benefits serve a purpose and are meant to be in place for times like this? Hm, will have to look into this later.
Anyway, since the current unemployment programs can’t possibly cover everyone who needs them right now, this bill proposes to help them out. The bill will increase unemployment insurance by $600 per week for four months. This benefit would extend to gig economy workers, freelancers, and furloughed workers who are still getting health insurance from their employers but are not receiving a paycheck.
If you have recently been laid off, this is for you. You can file for unemployment! And if you’re a freelancer or gig worker who has lost work, you can apply now too, which was not the case before.
$1,200 Checks Oprah Style. Kind Of.
Okay this one applies to many of us. Yay. Adults who make $75k or less annually, according to their tax returns, will receive a one time check of $1,200. You also get $500 per child in your household.
This is nice but is a bit of a bandaid on a bullet wound situation, imo. There’s no guarantee that more money will be coming, and tbh $1,200 doesn’t go that far for many of us. For many, this will mean being able to pay rent and then continuing to worry about how to put food on the table. For others it will mean being able to put a small dent in medical bills they have been slammed with because of coronavirus.
It’s a start, and I hope it provides you with some relief, but I hope to see more int he future.
At a press conference on Wednesday, Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said he expects direct payments to go out in about three weeks.
Hospitals Can Have A Little Help, As A Treat
Thank fucking god. Hospitals are, uh, pretty important during a pandemic. Go figure. The bill will contain $150 billion for hospitals treating coronavirus patients. $100 billion will go to hospitals, $1 billion will go to the Indian Health Service, and the remainder will be used to increase medical equipment capacity.
Wild that privatizing healthcare didn’t hold up in the end.
Small Businesses Can Hang Too
There would be $367 billion in the bill aimed at providing loans for small businesses that retain their workers in this bill. Amazing that smaller, local businesses, which typically make less money than large businesses, get less money from the government than the big ones who don’t need it as much do.
Incredible system. No notes.
I sincerely hope this helps keep our favorite local cafes, bars, restaurants, boutiques, etc. afloat.
And A Lil’ Something For Local Gov
With the bill, $150 billion would be given to state and local governments who are dealing with the impacts of the crisis in their local communities, including $8 billion for tribal governments. That’s nice.
The bill also includes eliminated interest on student loans through September, $400 million to support main-in voting, $450 million for the Emergency Food Assistance Program, and a delay on the REAL ID requirement.
Is This It?
Not if it’s up to Nancy Pelosi. The Speaker of the House said she hopes to send another round of direct payments to Americans in a subsequent package.
Want more news like this? Sign up for Sup’s daily newsletter to laugh (instead of cry) about the news.