(TargetLibery.org) – News from this past weekend once again demonstrated the coronavirus is continuing to cause damage. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY), Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY), and Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) continued their partisan bickering over the next stimulus bill. Companies in charge of making COVID-19 tests are acting really shady. Finally, food banks across the country are short on supplies as demand increases.
The Phase 4 Stimulus Fighting
A $484 billion interim coronavirus funding bill took about two weeks to finally pass through Congress. President Donald Trump signed it into law on Friday, April 24. With the Phase 4 bill now in discussion, McConnell, Schumer, and Pelosi don’t agree on the path forward.
Originally, the bill seemed to focus on infrastructure — now it’s state funding. Democratic lawmakers want to bail out states and local governments. McConnell wants to wait and see how the previous $2.8 trillion works. He said he wants additional funding to be “thoroughly evaluated” first.
The majority leader believes states have gotten enough aid and further bailouts might encourage bad behavior. Maybe they should face the consequences of their actions. That might include borrowing money from future generations or going bankrupt.
Whatever happens, it could be at least a month before we see our legislative body make any significant progress on this bill.
Companies Take Advantage of Relaxed Rules
Infection statistics are one of the major factors states use to determine when to reopen their economies. So, coronavirus antibody tests have hit the market in force to create this much-needed data. However, the companies that are producing them, seem to be skirting the rules.
A memo released from staffers on the House Oversight Committee showed companies may be falsely advertising their tests. The FDA loosened guidelines in order to allow the kits to hit the market sooner to help the American people. Instead of requiring a “substantive review” upfront before being distributed, the antibody tests can be sold without review. The government stipulated the manufacturers have to notify the FDA when those reviews are complete.
Meanwhile, some of those tests are being marketed as “FDA approved,” even though they’re not. The Democratic-controlled House isn’t taking legal action against those companies yet. For now, they’re continuing the investigation as potentially fraudulent tests are being sold on the market.
Food Banks Short on Supplies
Without a market for farmers to sell a substantial portion of their crops, tens of millions of pounds of produce have been left to rot. Countless gallons of milk are being poured down drains on dairy farms. Mountains of potatoes are sitting in empty fields waiting for people to come along and take some.
Farmers in Idaho are dumping their potatoes. 😢 I went to Picabo today to see the discarded pile (and pick up a bagful). Commercial demand has fallen, and there is no market for the extra potatoes. 🥔 pic.twitter.com/7MLLeIigmC
— Molly Page (@idahomolly) April 23, 2020
Unfortunately, farmers don’t have the funds or resources necessary to feed all of America themselves, especially for free.
Feeding America, which represents roughly 200 of the major food banks in America, paints a dire picture. Those banks are struggling to meet the averaged 70% increase in demand for their services. With more than 26 million out of work as a result of the pandemic, it’s easy to see why there’s such a demand.
While there’s food in demand across the nation, it’s all being grown in only a handful of locations. Farmers themselves don’t have the infrastructure to transport all of their crops.
Fortunately, the Agriculture Department recently started buying surplus fruits and vegetables from farmers.
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