The enormity of challenges posed by the coronavirus pandemic, and the speed at which crises can take root, demand that our leaders act boldly and quickly. But the need for decisive action also gives leaders an unfortunate opportunity to “not let a good crisis go to waste” by slipping unrelated policies into must-pass legislation. Congress has largely avoided this temptation to date, and it should continue to avoid it while preparing the next rounds of investment, relief, and stimulus.
Unfortunately, some of President Trump’s proposals for the next comprehensive relief bill would not meet this standard. Instead, these ideas risk exacerbating the spread of the disease while recklessly giving money away to those least in need. Although significantly less harmful, some Democrats have also put forth proposals that would do little to mitigate the current crisis and have no place in stimulus legislation. Policymakers in both parties should keep taking bold action to fight this historic pandemic without embracing these counterproductive or wasteful policies.
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