It’s Time to Pass a Coronavirus Bill. Let’s Get On With It.

I am very much in favor of compromising with Republicans and passing a coronavirus aid package. The strongest pushback I’ve gotten over this has been from fellow liberals who argue that it might help Donald Trump. It also might help a few Republican senators who are on the edge of defeat. If winning control of the presidency and flipping the Senate are the top items on the progressive agenda right now, then anything that endangers it, no matter how important, needs to be put off. It’s just too risky.

This is all true. I accept it. Except for one thing: it’s our last chance to help people who have been devastated by the coronavirus shutdowns and are likely to be even more devastated when the winter surge gets going. If Joe Biden wins the election, as seems likely, Republicans will steadfastly refuse to pass anything. Period. Nobody will ever get any assistance of any kind.

This is a perennial liberal weakness, but there you have it: I can’t abide the thought of making people suffer over political gamesmanship. This probably means I’m willing to settle for a bit less than the most hard-nosed negotiation would produce, but in a case like this that doesn’t bother me. Time is running short, and holding out over the gain or loss of an additional 10 percent in the HEROES Act—or a few minor regulations about how the money is spent—is just too dicey for me to accept.

Nobody will thank us for this. Most voters will never even realize that liberals are responsible for there being any assistance at all. If anything, it will probably help Republicans slightly. That’s a bitter pill to swallow, but this is the business we’ve chosen. Let’s get on with it.

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LET’S TALK ABOUT OPTIMISM FOR A CHANGE

Democracy and journalism are in crisis mode—and have been for a while. So how about doing something different?

Mother Jones did. We just merged with the Center for Investigative Reporting, bringing the radio show Reveal, the documentary film team CIR Studios, and Mother Jones together as one bigger, bolder investigative journalism nonprofit.

And this is the first time we’re asking you to support the new organization we’re building. In “Less Dreading, More Doing,” we lay it all out for you: why we merged, how we’re stronger together, why we’re optimistic about the work ahead, and why we need to raise the First $500,000 in online donations by June 22.

It won’t be easy. There are many exciting new things to share with you, but spoiler: Wiggle room in our budget is not among them. We can’t afford missing these goals. We need this to be a big one. Falling flat would be utterly devastating right now.

A First $500,000 donation of $500, $50, or $5 would mean the world to us—a signal that you believe in the power of independent investigative reporting like we do. And whether you can pitch in or not, we have a free Strengthen Journalism sticker for you so you can help us spread the word and make the most of this huge moment.

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