House Speaker Pelosi to unveil coronavirus aid package for workers
House speaker. Nancy Pelosi is expected to unveil legislation tomorrow aimed at helping workers who may be at financial risk because of the grow virus outbreak. Nbc News reports. The House will likely pass that bill as for the impact. This crisis is having on our daily lives. There are new developments almost hourly the NC Double A. announced March madness will go on at all venues but without fans in the arenas Seattle public schools will close for a minimum of two weeks beginning tomorrow. Tomorrow is also when the containment zone in the New York City. Suburb of new Rochelle. Officially begins officials. Say They hope that will control the spread of the corona virus in what has become the largest cluster of illness in the United States? So far here for our leadoff discussion on a Wednesday night. Anita Kumar White House correspondent and associate editor for Politico Robert Costa National Political reporter for the Washington Post and moderator of Washington. Week on PBS. And we welcome to the broadcast Austin Goolsbee former chairman of the Council of Economic Advisers for President Obama and a professor of economics at the University of Chicago. Welcome to all of you. Anita the president made a number of announcements this evening He did not declare a state of emergency. I do want to remind our viewers. There is a state of emergency that continues to be in effect in America because of the border the southern border. But that's not. As far as the president's gone he also suggested earlier. Today that jared Kushner is is sort of in charge of this and he's studying it more right while the president is expected in the next few days even perhaps next week to declare this emergency of very limited emergency that would basically free up. Forty billion dollars that is sitting there that The government has sitting there for disaster relief so he wants to free up some of that money and and the thinking here is that he wants to go ahead and act quickly He he was on the hill yesterday on Capitol Hill and he didn't hear from Republicans or Democrats Anything that would make him believe that they were going to quickly accept some of his ideas for economic relief and he wanted to bypass them and really just get some funds freed up so he could go ahead and do that Robert. You were reporting this evening about the fact that the president had a bit of a shouting match with his treasury secretary about the measures that the Fed and others have taken. This is his fed chief. Jay Powell who he put into place. Apparently he's very very frustrated with the Fed and things more can be done. He is unhappy with the Federal Reserve Chairman Pal on Monday afternoon while the president was in the Oval Office meeting with top advisers including treasury secretary. Mnuchin he lashed out about pal saying to the Treasury Secretary. You need to try to get him to lower rates if at all possible to try to see if you can have a conversation with him to stimulate the economy. The president knows he's being stymied on Capitol Hill about his payroll tax cut and just a couple of minutes ago house. Democrats formerly released publicly released. Their virus relief. Bill just have been reading it over for the past. Couple of minutes includes paid sick. Leave Food Security It also includes free testing unemployment benefits. You see Speaker Pelosi tonight. A after the president's speech trying to take the lead on the legislative answer to all of this Austin the stock market the Dow was down another fourteen hundred and some odd points. Today we're now off twenty percent from recent highs which puts the Dow into the bear a bear market. The five hundred is not far behind. The president has a what one might say unhealthy preoccupation with both the stock market and interest rates. What do you make of this though? Because the market is responding even after the president's announcement market futures were were lower. What do you make of what has to be done from from the perspective of the government whether it's a stimulus or what? The House is proposing. Well you know I think two things. The first is as we've spoken many times. Vulgar used to tell me over and over and the financial crisis that when crisis hits the only asset you have is your credibility and I think when you see the stock market plunging. The way did today the way it did this evening. It is a judgment about the credibility of the White House that we've had the president of the United States going out and saying people are finding that when they get sick they can still go to work. We only have fourteen cases and pretty soon. That's going to go down to zero when the president himself says that and when people cannot be tested no amount of stimulus is going to be sufficient because the reason that the economy is going into this tailspin because people are afraid and they are withdrawing from the economy and if you gave them a thousand dollar payroll tax cut. They're not going to spend it because the root of the problem when you get into a virus situation is that the greatest economic stimulus comes from slowing the rate of spread of the virus. And we've seen South Korea's succeed at it by having extensive testing and by finding the people who are sick and saying look. Don't go visit your grandma and stay isolated. For fourteen days. They've been able to slow the spread of the virus and their economy is gonNA come rebounding in a rapid basis the longer. We pretend that there aren't cases here and try to blame it on Europe and say. Oh we're going to block cargo boxes from Europe and that's GonNa help us without doing the testing the the more fear is going to be generated in people's minds and the worst the economy's GonNa get Robert this whole issue credibility this. This thing has developed very quickly. I want to just go back to starting really the last week of February the last couple of days of February when the President I started talking about Corona virus compared to what he said tonight. Let's listen together. We're finding very little problem very little pro now. You treat this like a flu. This is the most aggressive and comprehensive effort to confront a foreign virus in modern history. It's going to disappear one day. It's like a miracle it will disappear. We will be suspending all travel from Europe to the United States. For the next thirty days we have thousands or hundreds of thousands of people that get better just by sitting around even going to work. Go to work. If you're sick or not feeling well stay home. Democrats are politicizing the corona virus. This is new hoax. We must put politics aside. Stop the partisanship and unify together. As One Nation Robert this becomes a complicated call to arms for the president because he has been the one saying that the Democrats are politicizing. He and Fox News talking about the media blowing this out of proportion and now the president has got to step up there and do something that is unusual Primetime Oval Office address saying let's come together and take greater action to solve this and there are real world implications for so many the leaders around the country outside of the White House who are dealing with this in an interview. This week with Maryland governor Larry Hogan Republican. He told me that he's deeply concerned about the mixed messages coming out of this administration. He said he had a ninety minute. Meeting with Vice President Pence who said one thing and then he listened to the president who was talking in an entirely different way about the entire crisis. And that's a governor. A sitting governor dealing with cases in his State and when I was on Capitol Hill. There are also expressing concern. Democrats and Republicans about how the president is handling this. There's private concern among some of my top. Gop sources that the president's antennas to attuned to the stock market and his own reelection campaign and Anita in fact the rate cut that the president seemed to be agitating for which occurred last week did not have the desired effect in the market. Nothing the president he's doing is having the desired effect. But at this point you have competing plans the president's plan and then the Republican the Democratic Plan. That's come out who reconciles this. This is not been a White House at a congress. That's managed to come together on many things but at this point is necessary. Who reconciles the fact? That what the president thinks looks like stimulus and success is very different than what Nancy. Pelosi team do right. This is the problem this has been problem on a variety of issues. Obviously we've never been in this place before but on so many policy issues you know the Democrats and sometimes even the Republican Republicans on Capitol Hill can't agree with the White House. And so what happens is they don't do anything. That's not going to be the case this time because everybody believes that something needs to be done. That's why you're seeing the president saying that he's going to act should've unilaterally and then take the you know go ahead with a speech and and call on Congress tact but but you know going back to what Bob said the the president's in this place where he's trying to do two things he's talking about. How this isn't that big of a deal. It's going to go away as you've played but he also has to show that he is doing something tonight. He took a different action showing that he's doing something while he's also trying to downplay parts of it exactly for his reelection and for his popularity. What's going to happen in the future? The trump campaign and some of his allies are very much aware. Now that this is going to probably be the issue that he's going to be judged on in the next few months up until the election Austin during the president's address he said all travel from Europe to the United States will stop not even cargo will go there within correction came out says. Well no cargo is going to go. And then a correction came out to say no. Actually it's just non-americans coming to the United States. I wasn't clear that the virus makes that distinction all that well look this exactly what I mean if the president gets up and says something literally three minutes after he finishes saying it they say no. What he said is not what the policy is. It undermines your credibility the what also undermines the credibility on one hand to say we need a big stimulus and then this afternoon. The secretary of HHS was reached as you know. The president has a plan to cut seven hundred thousand people off of food stamps low income people and they said do you still plan to cut them off of food stamps on April first when those are the very people who are going to be losing their jobs and they say yes they do intend to cut them off of food stamps. So you you've got a we need relief but we're GONNA have a filibuster to hold up paid sick leave for all Americans and I think that I something is going to have to give. They're either going to have to start telling the truth. Doing tests and have a stimulus and an antivirus program or else. They're going to have to just declare. We don't care we all we WANNA do is make. The the problem seems small as possible.