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Monday, April 6, 2020
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  • INDIANAPOLIS  As of midnight on Tuesday, the federal government failed to submit payroll, meaning no paychecks will be issued on Friday. We are beyond the “partial” shutdown as funding expires for many agencies, and more than 20,000 federal employees in Indiana go unpaid. Many Hoosiers facing an actual crisis, not the manufactured one coming from the White House. To add insult to injury, federal employees deemed “essential” such as TSA agents and air traffic controllers will continue working without pay for the duration of the stoppage. The failure of leadership on every level during this shutdown hasn’t been the surprise. The surprise has been the incredible lack of empathy from many business leaders, as if getting a paycheck from the United States Government is something employees should consider an honor. It’s as if — somehow — smart, savvy businesspeople have abandoned all common sense when it comes to a political personality they support. If a person could see past political ideology and talk-radio rhetoric to see their neighbors’ suffering, they’d witness a wholly different reality. One where households with one — or even two — government workers will be struggling to pay next month’s rent. A reality where parents are picking up part-time jobs and asking friends and family for childcare support. 
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  • Pence says U.S. pandemic is 'comparable' to Italy
    “We think Italy may be the most comparable area to the United States at this point.” - Vice President Pence, to CNN on Wednesday, after he was asked how severe the COVID-19 pandemic will get in the United States. The pandemic has hit Italy the hardest to date.
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  • President Trump, Gov. Holcomb address the pandemic in their own words
    The COVID-19 pandemic is becoming the story of our time. As Sen. Todd Young explained, unlike the Great Recession of 2008-09 and the Oil Shock recession of 1979-82, what we are experiencing today is a double hammer: A pandemic and a severe economic panic. The Hoosier State is poised to go from a historic low 3.1% unemployment rate to double digits in the span of a month. At least one pandemic model says 2,400 Hoosiers will die.

    Tough times shift our attention to leadership. Here are quotes from President Trump and Gov. Eric Holcomb as the pandemic approached the U.S. and then impacted our nation and state.

    President Trump

    Jan. 22: “We have it totally under control. It’s one person coming in from China, and we have it under control. It’s going to be just fine.” – CNBC interview.

    Feb. 10: “Looks like by April, you know, in theory, when it gets a little warmer, it miraculously goes away.” – New Hampshire rally.

    Feb. 24: “The coronavirus is very much under control in the USA. … Stock market starting to look very good to me!” – On Twitter.

    Feb. 25: “China is working very, very hard. I have spoken to President Xi, and they are working very hard. If you know anything about him, I think he will be in pretty good shape. I think that is a problem that is going to go away.”

    Feb. 26: “We’re going to be pretty soon at only five people. And we could be at just one or two people over the next short period of time. So we’ve had very good luck.” – At a White House news conference.
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