WASHINGTON — Republicans in Georgia and Texas plan to reopen several nonessential businesses today despite warnings from medical experts that this will worsen the spread of the virus in their states. To make matters worse, those who don’t return to their jobs for fear of their safety risk losing their unemployment benefits. The GOP has given workers an impossible choice: they can either face financial ruin or go back to work, putting their lives and the lives of others at risk.
“No one should be forced to choose between their lives and their income,” said Democratic Legislative Campaign Committee President Jessica Post. “This Republican push to force people to get back to work against the advice of medical experts is counterproductive in our fight against the virus – it will set us back and hurt the economy in the long run. Worst of all, people will die.”
In Georgia, workers will lose the ability to collect unemployment if they don’t return to work, despite continued health concerns and spikes in Georgia coronavirus cases. And in Texas, where over 25,000 people have been infected by coronavirus, there is no plan for high-risk employees who are being forced to return to work.
“The GOP has completely bungled their response to this pandemic and now they want people to risk their lives to pretend it’s business as usual,” added Post. “It’s never been more important to elect Democrats who are listening to medical experts instead of right-wing activists.”