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The clock is ticking for Senate Republicans and Democrats to come to an agreement on the next COVID-19 assistance package before Congress adjourns for the August recess.
We hope our own West Virginia senators are wise enough to reject any solution that doubles down on reckless spending. In the four months since COVID put a strain on our economy, unprecedented numbers of West Virginians have filed for unemployment, several thousand local businesses have had to apply for federal Paycheck Protection Program loans, and families have found it harder to make ends meet.
But passing another bad spending bill, however well-intentioned, will make our economic problems worse.
As we look toward reopening, the last thing lawmakers should do is threaten recovery by bailing out states, many of which were experiencing financial problems long before COVID-19.
Instead of perpetuating the cycle of fiscal irresponsibility, lawmakers should work together to create solutions that focus on real people and foster innovation in the marketplace.
As Sen. Manchin has often pointed out, rising federal debt has real consequences for West Virginians. Surely, he must understand the burden of adding trillions more.
No one was immune to the economic impacts of COVID-19 and there is certainly a need to help those who have been harmed the most.
By safely reopening the economy and getting goods and services moving again, jumpstarting private investment in the economy by eliminating burdensome regulations, and removing unnecessary barriers to work such as onerous occupational licensing restrictions, we can bounce back from this crisis and prepare for future crises as well.
We encourage Sen. Manchin to say no to any deal that pushes us further away from that goal.
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