Pelosi and Schumer Joint Statement on Urgent Priorities for Interim Emergency Coronavirus Relief

April 13, 2020
Press Release

Washington, D.C. – Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Senate Democratic Leader Chuck Schumer issued this statement on Democrats’ urgent priorities for small businesses, families and working Americans in an interim emergency coronavirus relief package:

“Small businesses, hospitals, frontline workers and state and local governments across the country are struggling to keep up with this national crisis.  They need more help from the federal government and they need it fast – our nurses, doctors and health care workers need it as much as anyone else.  While the Trump Administration struggles to figure out how to distribute the funds provided for in the CARES Act, it’s clear that those appropriated amounts will not be enough to cover the tremendous need. 

“Further changes must also be made to the SBA’s assistance initiative, as many eligible small businesses continue to be excluded from the Paycheck Protection Program by big banks with significant lending capacity.  Funding for Covid-19 SBA disaster loans and grants must be significantly increased to satisfy the hundreds of billions in oversubscribed demand. 

“At the same time, strong additional support for hungry families and children relying on SNAP is needed.  We cannot abandon those who are facing a life-and-death struggle to put food on the table.

“Finally, we all desire an end to the shutdown orders so we can get Americans back to work and back to normal.  However, there is still not enough testing available to realistically allow that to happen.  We Democrats demand adequate funding for the production and distribution of national rapid testing and Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) – it cannot wait.  The collection and publication of demographic data are also desperately needed, so that we can accurately determine the level of impact on under-served communities and communities of color and direct needed resources to them immediately.

“We have real problems facing this country, and it’s time for the Republicans to quit the political posturing by proposing bills they know will not pass either chamber and get serious and work with us towards a solution.”