Republicans Discuss Future as Coronavirus Cases Surge
By: Hannah Sang
As coronavirus cases surge once again, government officials, governors, and businesses are making important decisions regarding the future of the United States in an effort to support families and keep citizens healthy.
Around the world, the coronavirus (Covid-19) disease continues to spread. Economies have been suffering from the extra wave of unemployment and the closure of businesses. In spring, record numbers of Americans signed up for food stamps.
Special urgencies are currently being discussed at the White House by Congressional Republican Senator Mitch McConnell of Kentucky, Representative Kevin McCarthy of California, Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin, and President Donald Trump himself. As a benefit, unemployed workers could receive an extra $600 per week. There is also a draft proposal in the works for testing and tracing efforts to find federal health agencies; the estimated cost of the bill is 1 trillion dollars, but the administration has blocked several billion dollars over the weekend.
U.S. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin has also confirmed the second round of stimulus checks, but details are still scarce. According to the newspaper The Hill, Mnuchin did confirm that the second round of stimulus will be the same as the first. According to the Tax Policy Center, 40% of people living in poverty also did not receive the first round of stimulus checks; citizens are hoping that this will not happen again.
Meanwhile, in Florida, the teachers’ unions are suing Governor Ron DeSantis over his orders to fully open schools even when the number of coronavirus cases is surging in the state. Mr. DeSantis initially ordered schools to open five days a week right after President Trump called for schools to reopen and threatened to cut federal funding for all school districts that won’t teach in-person.
There was also an accusation made against Mr. DeSantis saying that he violated a Florida law requiring that schools be “safe” and “secure” by the American Federation of Teachers, the nation’s second-largest teachers’ union, and the Florida Education Association. However, he brushed this accusation off quickly, saying that “the state’s department of education issued the order, not me.”
On Monday, July 12, Florida’s total coronavirus case count broke the single-day high, and 90 people are currently dying every day. Public health experts have also said districts should only open if they have a positive test rate below 5%. According to Miami Dade county, positive test rates are four times that amount.
President Donald Trump has also resumed the daily White House coronavirus briefings due to their high television ratings. He also told reporters that briefings would continue on Tuesday at 5 p.m.
President Trump eventually stopped holding the briefings after he was mocked for suggesting that people could eat or inject bleach to stop the virus, a statement that public health agencies were quick to warn about.
Throughout the United States, governors have been adding restrictions to public places and reporting new cases left and right. Coronavirus case rates continue to soar at high percentages per day. The future remains unknown for this pandemic and the world.