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Voting in the era of COVID-19 
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September 22, 2020

In March, when the United States shut down due to coronavirus, the upcoming election was pushed to the back burner in the minds of many as people struggled to be financially secure and stop the spread of the virus. Many months later, individuals are still grappling with the lack of federal resources, students have begun virtual learning, large social gatherings are still being avoided, and masks have become the new normal everywhere. As the Nov. 3 election approaches in the unexpected midst of COVID-19, we need to ask: will voting at the polls be safe?

CHN’s COVID-19: Tracking Hardship September 18, 2020
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September 18, 2020

The 200,000 deaths edition. Within days, the death toll from COVID-19 in the U.S. will surpass 200,000. At some point we have to ask Sen. Mitch McConnell and his obstinate band of Republican cohorts, how many lives is too many? And how long and how deeply must our nation suffer? Unemployed Americans already have lost the $600 weekly UI benefit that expired at the end of July. Now millions of Americans are seeing their state UI paychecks vanish as well, as 26-week time limits expire. A child care crisis is unfolding before our very eyes, as many people cannot go back to work without access to affordable child care. Overburdened state and local governments are cutting programs right and left, even though we need more investment, not less. And still: not a dime from the U.S. Senate.

Low-Income Renters Were on the Edge in “Good Times” –  The Pandemic Will Push Millions Over the Edge If Congress Does Not Act 
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September 18, 2020

With rent swallowing up so much of income, even in “good times,” it is clear that Congress must act to protect people from eviction by providing assistance so tenants can pay their back rent.  Even for those who go back to work at no reduction in income, if they have only one month’s back rent to pay, that plus the current rent will take every cent of their earnings. Many will owe much more than one month of back rent, and many are going back to work at reduced hours, if they do not join the ranks of long-term jobless.

Checks and balances: The Trump Administration continues to rack up losses in the nation’s courts 
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September 17, 2020

Executive actions by the Trump Administration have resulted in 132 court decisions, handed down by U.S. District Courts, U.S. Circuit Courts of Appeals, and the U.S. Supreme Court. Of those 132 decisions, 111 have gone against the Trump Administration, while 21 have gone the President’s way – for a loss-win percentage of 84 percent to 16 percent. As bad as the Administration’s loss-win record has been lately, it might surprise you to learn that it actually has improved, compared with almost a year ago.

CHN’s Deborah Weinstein: Precarious Gains of 2019 Snatched Away by Pandemic
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September 15, 2020

The news about last year’s income and poverty progress is in a way heartbreaking.  Workers have struggled to make gains, working hard to provide economic security for their families. What is heartbreaking is that hard-won gains have been snatched away by the pandemic and its economic toll.  But Senate Majority Leader McConnell and his caucus seem prepared to abandon millions of their constituents – to leave Washington without agreeing to further COVID-19 relief.

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