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Op-Ed: Pelosi’s solution to coronavirus pandemic and failing economy? Do nothing

In an interview with CNBC on Thursday, NBC reports that House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., said: “We could have a depression because so many people are out of work.”

As reported by the New York Times on Thursday, more than 16 million people have filed for unemployment in the past three weeks amid the coronavirus pandemic. As businesses everywhere are forcibly closing, Pelosi is not wrong: we could be on the brink of an economic depression. However, Pelosi, who led the charge in delaying the rollout of the $2 trillion coronavirus response bill, doesn’t think President Trump should reopen the country anytime soon.

Trump has not been shy about his desire to reopen the country. With millions of Americans out of work, and those numbers increasing daily, the negative economic impact of the coronavirus could long outlive the disease itself. However, many Democrats feel that reopening the country would only increase the spread of the virus.

In an interview with Politico, also on Thursday, Pelosi said: “I would hope that the scientific community would weigh in and say, ‘You can’t do this, it is only going to make matters worse if you go out too soon.’” Essentially, she believes we should keep the country closed. For how long should the country remain closed, exactly?  No one knows. But she believes that the country should open reopen later rather than sooner. 

During the Coronavirus Task Force press briefing on Thursday, Dr. Fauci reminded reporters that reopening the country isn’t a “one size fits all” approach, meaning, it could be possible to reopen certain areas of the country before others. But, it appears the Democrats will not consider this as an option, though it is coming from the voices of one of the scientific community they hoped would weigh in. 

Pelosi says that the whole point of the $2.2 trillion response bill was to keep the economy stimulated while keeping the country closed. However, on Thursday, as lawmakers quickly realized this bill did not include enough for small businesses, Democrats blocked Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin’s proposal that would have allowed an extra $250 billion in additional funding for the Paycheck Protection Program, which would have provided rescue loans for small businesses. 

So, the question has to be asked: If Pelosi doesn’t want the country to reopen anytime soon, and if she doesn’t want economic collapse, why would she and other Democrats oppose this emergency funding?

As the Speaker of the House, Pelosi does not have to wait for GOP senators to draft a bill or formulate a solution — she can do that herself. If she is so unhappy with the plans that Republicans and the Trump Administration are creating, then she should get to work in drafting her own solution instead of waiting to obstruct legislation, which slows down the process. With a global pandemic at hand and a looming economic depression, America doesn’t have time to waste. 

Neither President Trump nor Senate Republicans have all the answers, but Pelosi assuredly has none. If she had a solution to the current crisis at hand, we would have seen it by now.

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