According to numerous economists, if Congress does not agree to raise the debt ceiling, the federal government will not be able to pay all its bills. That default, which is projected on or around June 1, would plunge the U.S. into an instant recession.
Sixty-six million people rely on Social Security each month to pay their bills and keep a roof over their heads. For 40% of recipients, Social Security makes up 90% of their monthly income. These payments would be delayed.
SNAP food stamp payments would be delayed, as would Medicaid payments to states and Medicare payments to hospitals and doctors―devastating to health infrastructure, especially in rural communities.
Two million federal workers, 1.4 million active-duty military personnel, plus government contractors would all see delays in payments. And veterans’ benefits, including disability payments and pensions would be impacted.
Meanwhile the stock market would take a severe hit, dropping anywhere from 33 – 45%, wiping out $12 trillion of household wealth, including retirement accounts.
The we’re-still-counting-votes-and-COVID-cases edition. Even as a record number of Americans cast ballots in Tuesday’s election, COVID-19 cases in the U.S. reached staggering levels. For the first time, we surpassed 100,000 new cases in a single day. Case levels have reached alarming new records in recent days as outbreaks continue to grow across the country. Weekly infection rates reached record levels in nearly half the country in late October. Oklahoma, Kansas, and North Dakota are among the states struggling to handle the onslaught of cases amid shortages of both nurses – who themselves are infected or in quarantine – and ICU beds.
Meanwhile, economists are warning of a “double dip” recession in the coming months, caused by the surge in infections. But there could be a hint of good news on the horizon. This week, in a post-election reversal, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell said the Senate will take up a COVID-19 relief package when it returns for its lame-duck session. We don’t know how serious McConnell is or how robust the package will be, but McConnell did open the door to the possibility that it will include aid for state and local governments – urgently needed so that governments can continue to provide essential services, and to prevent further layoffs of government workers, which in turn would cause further damage to the economy.
The number of new COVID-19 cases reported in the U.S. on November 5. This was one day after the number of daily cases first exceeded 100,000, and marked a 54% increase from two weeks earlier. Tweet this.
More than 800
The average number of COVID-19 deaths per day in the U.S. in early November. That’s below the spring peak, but much higher than in early July. Tweet this.
Proportion of tenants not caught up on rent, as surveyed from October 14-26 (8.4 million people). More than one in five people in households where someone lost work income is behind in rent.
The number of eviction filings in 24 cities tracked by Princeton University’s Eviction Lab since March. Currently, a moratorium prevents actual evictions, but landlords may still proceed with filings. In Maryland, “hundreds” of eviction filings were submitted in court by Westminster Management, part owned by Trump son-in-law and advisor Jared Kushner. Westminster adds court fees to the rent owed when the notices are filed.