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May 05, 2020 04:05 PM UTC

Extorter-In-Chief: Trump Names His Price For Coronavirus Aid

  • 5 Comments
  • by: Colorado Pols

President Trump and Sen. Cory Gardner.

Another jaw-dropper of a Tweet from the Tweeter-in-chief Donald Trump this afternoon, laying out a series of apparent demands for desperately needed aid to state governments whose revenues have nosedived during the COVID-19 pandemic: political chestnuts like punishing so-called “sanctuary cities” including Denver, eliminating (or we assume at least cutting) a variety of federal taxes, and the increasingly everpresent demand for liability protections for businesses who force their workers back on the job unsafely. Trump specifically cites “restaurants and ent[ertainment]” as recipients of those protections, which are of course close to Trump’s hospitality industry heart.

Although Trump claimed separately yesterday that the “poorly run” states he’s referring to are blue states, red state strongholds are seeing huge revenue declines along with Colorado and just about everywhere else. NBC News reports today:

COVID-19 has led to dramatic decreases in revenue for state governments across the country — regardless of which party has its hand on the wheel. While many states are still crunching their numbers ahead of the next fiscal year, which begins in the summer for most, a handful of GOP-led states already have made clear the budget woes that face them…

Exacerbated by the oil market collapse, Oklahoma budget officials told NBC News they’re projecting a shortfall of $1.3 billion. In Alaska, similar economic conditions, coupled with prior woes, have led budget officials to project total state revenue this year will be slashed nearly in half from $11.2 billion to $6.6 billion. The amount of revenue won’t recover to 2019 levels for at least the next decade, that projection shows.

In Arkansas, revenue forecasts now project a shortfall of more than $530 million, while in Wyoming, revenue shortfall projections range from $555 million to $2.8 billion through the end of fiscal year 2022. And in West Virginia, state revenue officials forecast a possible $500 million deficit as a result of the pandemic. A Moody’s Analytics report concluded the state’s financial picture could be worse, with a shortfall of up to $1.9 billion.

Trump’s false assignment of blame to “blue states” for a revenue plunge that has ravaged states of all ideological persuasions is typical mindless Trump verbal diarrhea and fairly easily disregarded. But demanding huge future revenue reductions in exchange for money desperately needed today is about as senseless, even predatory a fiscal policy as we can possibly imagine.

In a state facing our own multibillion-dollar shortfall, it feels a lot like extortion.

Comments

5 thoughts on “Extorter-In-Chief: Trump Names His Price For Coronavirus Aid

    1. The only thing that matters to him — More money for him and Ivanka.  Do you believe he ever thinks of anything else? A reptilian brain at its purest.

    2. Tax cuts have always been the most powerful of all miracle cure-alls; where have you been? . . .

      . . . plus, what Harry said.

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