Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN) led a letter to House and Senate leadership calling for the inclusion of relief checks in the next COVID-19 stimulus package. The letter also reinforces the calls made by countless Americans to provide direct cash assistance in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic.
“Millions across this country are without a job, without a paycheck, and without an ounce of compassion from the President of the United States,” Rep. Omar said.
“Children are going to bed with an empty stomach because of this economic crisis. Families are worried about whether they will be on the streets when the eviction moratorium expires just weeks from now. Eight million additional people are in poverty now as a result of this government’s failure to meet their basic human needs. The American people are suffering, and their leaders continue to ignore their plight. The American people are crying out for direct relief in the form of stimulus checks.”
The cash assistance included in the CARES Act proved to be an effective way to provide direct support to the American people and shielded families from financial ruin. The previous relief checks also increased consumer spending, which helped boost economic activity. Economists project similar outcomes for subsequent relief checks.
“The COVID-19 pandemic has caused major shocks to the U.S. economy and public health system in our modern history,” the members wrote.
“This pandemic has only worsened existing systemic inequities in our society, with low-wage earners, women, and Black and Latino communities disproportionately suffering from the human and economic toll of the virus.”
“Almost half of all households in the United States reported experiencing serious financial concerns such as running out of savings and not having enough money for basic necessities. Direct cash assistance has become a lifeline for the American people.”
The letter was signed by Rashida Tlaib, Jamie Raskin, Ayanna Pressley, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, Donald S. Beyer Jr., Earl Blumenauer, Lisa Blunt Rochester, Suzanne Bonamici, Brendan Boyle, Tony Cárdenas, André Carson, Kathy Castor, Judy Chu, David N. Cicilline, Emanuel Cleaver, Jim Cooper, Madeleine Dean, Mark DeSaulnier, Veronica Escobar, Adriano Espaillat, Ruben Gallego, Sylvia R. Garcia, Al Green, Raúl M. Grijalva, Jimmy Gomez, Deb Haaland, Jahana Hayes, Pramila Jayapal, Eddie Bernice Johnson, Henry C. “Hank” Johnson, Robin L. Kelly, Ro Khanna, John B. Larson, Brenda L. Lawrence, Barbara Lee, Alan Lowenthal, Carolyn B. Maloney, James P. McGovern, Jerry McNerney, Grace Meng, Gwen Moore, Jerrold Nadler, Eleanor Holmes Norton, Chellie Pingree, Mark Pocan, Bobby L. Rush, Tim Ryan, Mary Gay Scanlon, Jan Schakowsky, José E. Serrano, Albio Sires, Mark Takano, Dina Titus, Lauren Underwood, Juan Vargas, Nydia M. Velázquez, Bonnie Watson Coleman, and Peter Welch.
This letter was endorsed by Children’s Defense Fund, Church World Service, Closing the Women’s Wealth Gap, Common Defense, Demand Progress, Economic Security Project Action, Equal Rights Advocates, Friends of the Earth U.S., Indivisible, Native Women Lead, NETWORK Lobby for Catholic Social Justice, Public Citizen, Tax March, Voices for Progress, Center for Popular Democracy, and Sunrise Movement.
The full letter can be accesses here: