For Immediate Release

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Stevie O’Hanlon press@sunrisemovement.org, 610-955-7398

Seven Congressional Leaders Join 450+ Progressive Organizations to Demand “People’s Bailout” in Response to Coronavirus Crisis

Dear Colleague letter to Congressional colleagues calls for “down payment” on green economy.

WASHINGTON - Senator Ed Markey, Senator Tammy Duckworth, Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, Rep. Mark Pocan, Rep. Debbie Dingell, Rep. Pramila Jayapal, and Rep. Barbara Lee have joined more than three hundred progressive organizations, including Communications Workers of America, Blue Green Alliance, and SEIU across the country to launch a new “People’s Bailout” campaign to push Congress to focus on the needs of working people and address the urgent threat of climate change in any federal response to the coronavirus crisis. 

As reports warn of unemployment rates reaching 20% this summer, the advocates are pushing for Members of Congress to forbid bailouts of corporate executives like the no-string-attached $500 billion fund Senator McConnell is trying to put into the package and ensure the stimulus package is supporting working people and continuing to address climate change.

“This is a pivotal moment for Congressional Democrats, and it’s a chance to show our party learned something from the 2008 financial crisis,” said Varshini Prakash, of Sunrise Movement. “We have a choice to make: will we let the Trump administration spend hundreds of billions bailing out just the financial industry and massive corporations, or will we put millions of people to work tackling the dual crises of COVID and climate change? Gambling trillions of tax dollars on stimulating the stock market can't fix the shortage of hospital beds, or the pollution in our skies.”

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“As we work to advance further spending packages to ensure immediate relief and long-term recovery, we need to consider the interrelated crises of income and wealth inequality, racism, and ecological decline, which were in place long before COVID-19, and now risk being intensified,” read the Dear Colleague letter sent by Reps. Ocasio-Cortez, Pocan, Dingell, Jayapal, and Lee.

“Republicans want to give Donald Trump a $500 billion blank check to bail out any corporation he wants and to spend $3 billion driving up the price of oil for consumers at the pump to protect oil companies’ profits,” said Sunrise Political Director Evan Weber. “Is it so ridiculous to suggest that if the government is going to give money to a company right now that we should ensure the money is going to workers not executives and toward preventing the second biggest global crisis: climate change?”

For more information on the People’s Bailout push, including for a full list of participating organizations, click here: https://www.thepeoplesbailout.com?source=sunrise

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Sunrise Movement is a movement to stop climate change and create millions of good jobs in the process.

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