Issue Report ● For The People
For Immediate Release: 
September 21, 2020
Contact Info: 
Annaliese Davis 202-225-3130
Throughout the 116th Congress, House Democrats have worked to deliver results for the American people, passing legislation to address each pillar of the “For The People” agenda: lower health care costs, higher wages by rebuilding America, and cleaning up corruption and strengthening our Democracy. Over the past two years, the Democratic-led House has passed nearly 600 bills, including legislation to lower health care and prescription drug prices, raise wages, advance economic and retirement security, end gun violence, act on the climate crisis, protect Dreamers, and strengthen voting rights.

While Democrats have worked for the people, Republicans have failed the people. From the facts of the past few years – deaths from COVID-19, the state of the economy, the increase in the deficit, and the number of uninsured Americans – to major legislation blocked by Senate Republicans, to Republicans working against the American people’s priorities, to rampant corruption in the Trump Administration, Republicans have shown that they are not working for the people.
The facts are clear: Republicans have failed the American people. From COVID cases and deaths, to the number of unemployed and uninsured Americans, the numbers are grim. And instead of taking meaningful action to stop this pandemic and limit the economic impacts, Republicans have done nothing.
  • COVID deaths in the U.S., as of 9/20/20: 199,517
  • COVID cases in the U.S., as of 9/20/20: 6,812,470
  • Unemployment:
    • When President Trump took office in January 2017, unemployment was at 4.7 percent.
    • At the beginning of the 116th Congress in January 2019, unemployment was at 4.0 percent.
    • Today, due to the mismanagement of the COVID-19 pandemic by President Trump and Republicans, unemployment is at 8.4 percent.
  • Unemployment Insurance claims:
    • When President Trump took office in January 2017, there were 241,000 initial UI claims (for the week ending 1/28/17). 
    • At the beginning of the 116th Congress in January 2019, there were 236,000 initial UI claims (for the week ending 1/26/19).
    • Today, due to the mismanagement of the COVID-19 pandemic by President Trump and Republicans, there were 860,000 initial UI claims (for the week ending 9/12/20).
    • Roughly 30 million Americans remain out of work.
  • Deficit:
    • During President Obama’s last full year in office in 2016, the deficit stood at $585 billion.
    • At the beginning of the 116th Congress in January 2019, after Republicans cut taxes for the wealthy at the expense of the middle class, the deficit stood at $984 billion.
    • Today, due to the mismanagement of the COVID-19 pandemic by President Trump and Republicans, the deficit stands at $3.3 trillion (CBO projection for 2020).  
  • Uninsured Americans:
    • During President Obama’s last year in office in 2016, 27.5 million Americans were uninsured.
    • In 2019, after repeated attempts by Republicans to undermine and sabotage the Affordable Care Act, there were 33.2 million uninsured Americans.
    • In 2020, a report found that from February 2020 through May 2020 alone, an estimated 5.4 million Americans became uninsured because of unprecedented job loss caused by the Republican mismanagement of this pandemic.
Republicans have continued to stand in the way of progress on major issues that the American people support. Currently, 340 bipartisan bills are sitting on Mitch McConnell’s desk awaiting action as Republicans ignore the challenges confronting our country and the calls for change coming from the people. Here’s just a sampling of legislation that Republicans won’t even consider:
  • H.R. 1, For The People Act (March 8, 2019)
  • H.R. 2, Moving Forward Act (June 30, 2020)
  • H.R. 3, The Elijah E. Cummings Lower Drug Costs Now Act (December 12, 2019)
  • H.R. 4, Voting Rights Advancement Act (December 6, 2019)
  • H.R. 5, Equality Act (May 17, 2019)
  • H.R. 6, The American Dream & Promise Act (June 4, 2019)
  • H.R. 7, Paycheck Fairness Act (March 27, 2019)
  • H.R. 8, Bipartisan Background Checks Act (February 27, 2019)
  • H.R. 9, Climate Action Now Act (May 1, 2019)
  • H.R. 582, Raise the Wage Act (July 18, 2019)
  • H.R. 1425, Patient Protection and Affordable Care Enhancement Act (June 29, 2020)
  • H.R. 1585, Violence Against Women Reauthorization Act (April 4, 2019)
  • H.R. 7120, George Floyd Justice in Policing Act (June 25, 2020)
On issue after issue, President Trump and his Republican allies have worked against the priorities of the American people:

Pandemic Response
  • President Trump and Republicans have mismanaged the COVID-19 pandemic from the start, playing down the severity of the disease and not implementing a national plan to contain it.
    • President Trump: “Looks like by April, you know, in theory, when it gets a little warmer, it miraculously goes away.” [2/10/20]
    • President Trump: “Now, you treat this like you treat the flu… You know, in many cases, when you catch this, it’s very light; you don’t even know there’s a problem.” [2/26/20]
    • President Trump: “It’s going to disappear. One day, it’s like a miracle, it will disappear.” [2/27/20]
    • President Trump, regarding the death toll of around 160,000 Americans on that day: “It is what it is.” [8/5/20]
Health Care
  • President Trump has promised time and time again that Republicans would introduce a new health care plan to replace the Affordable Care Act and protect Americans with pre-existing conditions – but after four years, has failed to do so.
    • “Nobody knew health care could be so complicated.” [2/27/17]
    • “Let Obamacare fail; it’ll be a lot easier… I think we’re probably in that position where we’ll just let Obamacare fail.” [7/18/17]
    • “We're going to produce phenomenal health care, and we already have the concept of the plan… We'll be announcing that in two months, maybe less.” [6/16/19]
    • “We’re signing a health-care plan within two weeks, a full and complete health-care plan.” [7/19/20]
  • Instead, his Administration is pursuing a lawsuit to strike down the Affordable Care Act, which would take health care coverage away from 20 million Americans and take away protections for millions more who have pre-existing conditions.
Other Issues
  • Economy: President Trump continues to lie about the strong economy he inherited. But under President Obama, “the economy underwent its longest sustained expansion on record,” and “the economy created more jobs in every year of Obama’s second term than it did in Trump’s first year.” [Business Insider, 1/21/20]
    • “When I took office three years ago, America’s economy was in a rather dismal state.” [1/21/20]
  • Climate Change: Rather than making the United States the world’s leader on clean energy innovation, which would create good American jobs and address climate change, President Trump pulled the U.S. out of the Paris Agreement.
    • When confronted about the impact of climate change on the fires in the Western United States, President Trump said: "I don't think science knows, actually…It'll start getting cooler. You just watch." [9/14/20]
  • Environment: The Trump Administration has rolled back clean water and clean air provisions, putting at risk the air we breathe and the water we drink.
    • “I’m a big believer in that word: the environment. I’m a big believer. But I want clean air. I want clean water. And I also want jobs, though… I don’t want to close up our industry because somebody said, you know, you have to go with wind.” [1/7/20]
  • Immigration: The Trump Administration ended the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program, separated families at the border and put children in cages, and banned citizens from several Muslim-majority nations from entering the U.S.
    • "Why d we want all these people from 'shithole countries' coming here?" [1/12/18]
    • “When Mexico sends its people, they’re not sending their best…They’re not sending you. They’re not sending you. They’re sending people that have lots of problems, and they’re bringing those problems with us. They’re bringing drugs. They’re bringing crime. They’re rapists.” [6/16/15]
  • Foreign Policy: President Trump praises dictators and has damaged our relationship with allies, diminishing the United States as the world’s leader.
    • “[Russian President Vladimir Putin] is a great guy. I think we had a really good meeting. I think he is a good person, we started discussing trade. I think we should have trade between Russia and USA, two great countries. We had a great meeting yesterday. He is a terrific person.” [6/29/19]
    • “[North Korean dictator Kim Jong Un] wrote me beautiful letters, and they’re great letters…We fell in love.” [2/25/19]
    • Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan “has become a friend of mine…I think now we’re as close as we’ve ever been.” [9/21/17]
  • Postal Service: President Trump opposes critical funding for the USPS because he wants to make it harder for Americans to vote by mail this November.
    • “They need that money in order to have the post office work so it can take all of these millions and millions of ballots…If they don’t get those two items, that means you can’t have universal mail-in voting because they’re not equipped to have it.” [8/13/20]
  • Veterans: President Trump has shown a complete disregard for the veterans who have served our nation proudly. 
    • When discussing visiting the Aisne-Marne American Cemetery in 2018, President Trump said: “Why should I go to that cemetery? It’s filled with losers.” [09/3/20]
    • “...Trump referred to the more than 1,800 marines who lost their lives at Belleau Wood as ‘suckers’ for getting killed." [09/3/20]
  • Equality and Justice: President Trump routinely praises white supremacists and has embraced the conspiracy theory QAnon. He stokes racial tensions and uses racist language to divide our nation.
    • President Trump’s comment on the neo-Nazis/white nationalist rally in Charlottesville where one person was killed: “There were very fine people on both sides.” [8/15/17]
    • President Trump encouraged violence against peaceful citizens protesting the murder of George Floyd by tweeting “when the looting starts, the shooting starts.” [5/29/20]
    • The President repeatedly referred to COVID-19 as the “Kung Flu or Chinese virus.” [6/24/20]
President Trump’s Administration has been characterized by rampant corruption. The President, officials within his Administration, individuals on his campaign have abused their power for political and personal gain since day one. 
  • President Trump has exhibited unethical and corrupt behavior since his campaign began:  
    • He refused to divest from his real estate companies or place his assets into a blind trust, violating the emoluments clause of the U.S. Constitution.
      • Since 2015, more than $16 million in political and taxpayer funds have been spent at Trump properties.
      • President Trump has scheduled official government meetings at his properties, including efforts to host the 2020 G7 summit at the Trump National Doral in Miami.
      • Originally planned to host the 2020 G7 summit at a Trump golf resort
    • President Trump fired FBI Director James Comey while he was investigating Russia’s interference in the 2016 election, several months after Comey refused to pledge loyalty to him.
      • He asked then-Director Comey to “let go” of charges against National Security Advisor Michael Flynn.
    • Trump Administration officials routinely violate the Hatch Act, a law prevents civil service employees from engaging in political activity while on duty.
  • President Trump has repeatedly solicited foreign interference in the U.S. election:
    • “Russia, if you're listening, I hope you’re able to find the 30,000 emails that are missing.” [7/27/16]
    • Asked if he would accept damaging information on his opponent if it came from a foreign government, President Trump responded: “They have information - I think I'd take it.” [6/13/19
    • “China should start an investigation into the Bidens because what happened in China is just about as bad as what happened with Ukraine.” [10/3/19]
  • On December 18, 2019, the U.S. House of Representatives voted to impeach President Trump for abusing his power by attempting to bribe a foreign government to interfere in the 2020 election, and for obstructing Congress to cover it up.
    • “I would like you to do us a favor though…. Whatever you can do, it’s very important that you do it if that’s possible.” [Call transcript]
  • President Trump continues to deny Russia interfered in the 2016 election, has refused to hold Russia accountable, and has not taken sufficient action to prevent Russian interference in the 2020 election.
  • Numerous Trump Administration and Trump campaign officials have been convicted of crimes.
    • Roger Stone: Convicted of lying under oath to lawmakers investigating Russian interference in the 2016 election
    • Paul Manafort: Convicted of tax and bank fraud. Pled guilty to conspiracy charges related to money laundering and witness tampering
    • Michael Cohen: Convicted of lying to Congress about a proposed Trump real estate project. Guilty of securing hush money to pay off women who had sexual encounters with President Trump
    • Michael Flynn: Pled guilty to lying to the FBI about conversations with the Russian Ambassador to the United States prior to the inauguration of President Trump
    • Rick Gates: Pled guilty to conspiracy against the U.S. and lying to investigators
    • George Papadopoulos: Pled guilty to lying to the FBI about contact with Russian officials
  • Additionally, confidant and Trump campaign insider Steve Bannon was charged in August with defrauding Trump supporters to build a wall along the U.S./Mexico border.
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