Heck calls for ‘automatic stabilizers now’ after ‘dire’ unemployment numbers

AUGUST 20, 2020

OLYMPIA – Today, Congressman Denny Heck (WA-10) issued the following statement in response to the news that 1.1 million new unemployment claims were filed last week.

“This week’s dire unemployment numbers simply reinforce what my colleagues and I have been stressing for months: millions across our country need help—and they need it now.

“Each week Senate Republicans hold vital pandemic aid like expanded unemployment insurance hostage, another million Americans file for unemployment and must rely on the safety net to survive. Unemployment has already plunged past the depths of the Great Recession—and the damage shows no signs of abating. We cannot and will not allow the livelihoods of millions of Americans to be subject to Leader McConnell’s cynical, partisan whims. We must pass ‘automatic stabilizers’ now.

“I join more than half of the Democratic Caucus in calling for the House to consider legislation that would restore expanded $600 per week unemployment assistance until the economic and health crises have subsided. I commend Speaker Pelosi for acting swiftly to address the crisis at the Postal Service, and my good friends Rep. Peters, Rep. Beyer, and Rep. Kilmer for underscoring that our COVID-19 response cannot leave anyone behind.”

Yesterday, Rep. Heck joined 117 House Democrats in urging Speaker Pelosi and Leader Hoyer to bring Rep. Don Beyer (VA-08) and Rep. Derek Kilmer’s (WA-06) Worker Relief and Security Act to a floor vote this week. The Worker Relief and Security Act would automatically continue, expand, and adjust enhanced unemployment insurance programs based on public health and economic triggers through the duration of the crisis without the need for further congressional action.


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