How Much Stimulus We Need

December 11, 2020

Current congressional proposals won’t do enough.

The Roosevelt Rundown is an email series featuring the Roosevelt Institute’s top stories of the week.

The Right Number

When—even whether—Congress will reach a deal on stimulus remains an open question. In the framework’s current $908 billion iteration, however, one thing is certain: It won’t be enough to revive the US economy.

As Roosevelt Fellow Mark Paul and Adam S. Hersh (Director of Washington Global Advisors, LLC) estimate in a new Groundwork Collaborative report, getting the economy to full potential would require $3–4.5 trillion in relief in the near term and automatic renewal triggers to avoid future benefit cliffs.

“Economics has given us all the tools we need to address the crisis, and we just need the policymakers to open up the checkbooks of the US government,” Paul told Vox’s Emily Stewart. Read on. 

Executive stimulus: As Roosevelt President & CEO Felicia Wong told NPR, the incoming Biden administration won’t have to wait to take its own action on student debt cancellation and a $15 minimum wage for federal contractors. Read more.

Coming soon: Next week, Roosevelt will release a new trio of stimulus-focused issue briefs that examine the lessons of the Great Recession and explain why we need deficit-financed investment now. Watch this space.


Moving Beyond Neoliberalism

In a Washington Post Live event this week, Wong spoke with global affairs journalist Elise Labott and the Hewlett Foundation’s Jennifer Harris about the big ideas necessary to move beyond neoliberalism. Watch here.

And on a new episode of The Ezra Klein Show, Wong discussed her report The Emerging Worldview: How New Progressivism Is Moving Beyond Neoliberalism and what new progressivism might look like in the Biden era. Listen now. 


The Future of Democracy

“Reconstructing our democracy will be daunting, but it will also lift us up. Democracies are about more than elections every four years,” Roosevelt Chief Economist Joseph Stiglitz writes for the New York Times

“We won’t succeed in restoring trust and a sense of social cohesion until we confront, head on, our intertwined racial, ethnic, and economic inequalities. These schisms inevitably divide us and undermine the solidarity democracy demands.”


Catch Up

If you missed this week’s Roosevelt webinar, watch the full recording now:

Employer Power and Employee Skills: Understanding Workforce Training Programs in the Context of Labor Market Power

  • Featured panelists: Roosevelt Fellow Suresh Naidu, Aaron Sojourner (Associate Professor, Carlson School of Management, University of Minnesota), Amanda Cage (President & CEO, National Fund for Workforce Solutions; Member, WorkRise Leadership Board), Lenore Friedlaender (Assistant to the President, 32BJ SEIU), and Howard Rothschild (President, Realty Advisory Board on Labor Relations)
  • Moderator: Elisabeth Jacobs (Acting Executive Director, WorkRise; Senior Fellow, Center on Labor, Human Services, and Population, Urban Institute)


What We’re Reading

States Try to Rescue Small Businesses as US Aid Is SnarledNew York Times

The Appointments Biden Needs to Prioritize to Revitalize the Economy – Vox

The Secret to Beating the Electoral CollegeThe Atlantic