Late this past March, state and local governments issued social-distancing orders to stop the pandemic, causing businesses to shutter overnight, while sending millions of workers into unemployment.
Now, as the pace of the virus slows, state by state, governors are facing mounting pressure to get businesses operating and workers back to work.
The reopening of the country comes as over 20 million Americans lost their jobs this past April, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics.
Critics of the lockdown orders say that by sending Americans into unemployment lines, the current crisis has not been caused by the pandemic itself, but by the reckless shut down in response.
Stephen Moore, a member of the economic task force created by President Trump, told us the potential risks of reopening too slowly, and why he believes a working America, not money from another spending bill, is what the country needs.
He called the unemployment numbers a “catastrophic situation,” but told The Cats Roundtable with over half the states opening for business, there is “new opportunity.”
But Moore believed states slower to reopen were missing the necessity of getting their states to work. He called on governors of hard-hit states, such as New York’s Cuomo and New Jersey’s Phil Murphy, to “look at the facts.”
According to Moore, those facts point to every day that states wait, “the economic damage gets worse.” He criticized governors for asking for more aid without trying to get workers back to work, saying the “key to reviving” harder hit states was to “open for business—it’s that simple.”
“Those states have to get with the program and start opening up their doors,” Moore said, telling The Cats Roundtable he hoped the whole nation would be open by Memorial Day.
While he continues to predict a “tough summer,” Niire was also expecting a “swift recovery” in the fall. But he cautioned even as public life reopens, the future is still going to be a daunting time for businesses.
“Customers are still a little bit afraid to go outside, people are nervous, they’re worried about their health,” Moore said. “It’s going to be slow, but you’ve got to get going, you have to start somewhere.”
Moore also warned the recovery could be compromised by a 2 trillion dollar spending bill, currently being proposed by Democrats in the House.
“That would bankrupt our country,” he told The Cats Roundtable. “Donald Trump cannot allow another massive spending bill.”
Instead, Moore called for a payroll tax suspension to “help workers, not politicians” while criticizing states and lawmakers for trying to throw money at the problem while “allowing 35 million of our fellow Americans to become unemployed.”
“It should be a basic human right, the ability to work and make a living,” he said, calling it “immoral and shameful” to “shut down the livelihood of so many Americans.”