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Opinions | Any economic benefits could be short-circuited by a virus surge

The Washington Post logo The Washington Post 11/22/2020 Letters to the Editor

Regarding the Nov. 19 news article “Report: 12 million could lose aid after Christmas”:

Some of the economic and employment benefits from the first round of pandemic relief funding have been undercut by subsequent waves of infection. Here’s hoping that the next round does not throw good money after bad. Rather, it should incentivize jurisdictions and companies to promote all Centers for Disease Control and Prevention-recommended measures to control the spread of the virus. Otherwise, the short-term economic and employment benefits from those taxpayer dollars risk being negated by the costs associated with high subsequent infection rates.

Infection rates among states and localities vary widely. North Dakota’s infection rate per capita since the pandemic began is twice that of neighboring Minnesota. Factors that may account for such variation include cooler weather, superspreader events, public attitudes around personal freedom and social responsibility, political messaging, and leadership around infection controls.

Nobody wants to further inflame partisanship around the pandemic-related health measures or withhold funds from people for local infection trends over which they have no control. Still, it would be fiscally responsible for Congress and the incoming administration to craft legislation that takes account of the relationship between infection rates and the resilience of any economic recovery.

Keith Kozloff, Takoma Park

Gallery: Not Having This Work Benefit Makes You More Likely to Get COVID (Best Life)

It should be sufficiently disgraceful that in the beginning of a global pandemic, the Trump administration pawned what rightfully should have been a federal response off on the states. To little surprise and armed with what amounted to more bravado than scientific guidance, 50 states were left to fend to their own devices.

Now, with a quarter-million dead and more than 12 million infected in the United States, President Trump refuses to share Centers for Disease Control and Prevention data with the president-elect. Does Mr. Trump’s arrogance and hubris border on treason? There’s plenty of room for discussion regarding this.

Louis Krupnick, Silver Spring

Read more letters to the editor.

a man standing in a room: A hospital staffer treats a patient suffering from the coronavirus. © Denis Balibouse/Reuters A hospital staffer treats a patient suffering from the coronavirus.

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