Today, Rep. Cindy Axne (IA-03) joined her colleagues on the House Committee on Financial Services to hear testimony and ask questions of Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin and Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell related to coronavirus (COVID-19) aid programs and the need for additional relief in the coming months.
“As we all know, one in eight Americans are going hungry, more than 3 million businesses have closed this year, and we’re approaching 100,000 people hospitalized with COVID,” said Rep. Axne. “Does seeing this kind of need, and the discussion that we’ve had today, show the importance of passing another COVID aid package – and how quickly do we need to get that done?”
Rep. Axne also asked Chair Powell to highlight the potential impacts of unemployment benefits expiring for millions of Americans, which is projected to happen the day after Christmas without additional action by Congress.
In addition, Rep. Axne pushed Secretary Mnuchin to explain his recent decision to move $455 billion in unspent CARES Act funds into an account that would be unreachable by his successor in the incoming Biden administration – a move that a member of the COVID-19 Congressional Oversight Commission recently called “illegal.”
“Why are you looking for a way not to help the American people right now?” Rep. Axne asked Secretary Mnuchin. “This isn’t your money – it’s taxpayer money and it should be quickly available to American people right now when they need the help.”
Rep. Axne also asked Secretary Mnuchin if the Trump Administration is planning to take action to extend the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC) eviction moratorium – which is due to expire on December 31st.
Secretary Mnuchin promised to speak with President Trump about extending that moratorium.