The House passed H.R. 6800, the Health and Economic Recovery Omnibus Emergency Solutions (or HEROES) Act, last Friday night, but the Republican-held Senate has described the bill as "dead on arrival," even though (as a pair of ITEP analyses instructs us) the HEROES Act is a lot more like a good pandemic relief bill than the CARES Act. The HEROES Act provides help for states and localities, extends unemployment insurance, expands the Earned Income Tax Credit (or EITC), funds our Post Office through an election during which they'll be quite busy, repeals a particularly noxious tax-cut-for-the-rich, and expands direct payments to Americans making less than six figures. So now would be a good time to call your Senators and demand they pass the HEROES Act -- not least so that we render irrelevant Republican "priorities" like a payroll tax-cut-for-the-rich and "blanket immunity" for corporations that open too early. Senators should only find their constituents' will relevant, but let's not give them the excuse that we never communicated that will.
Meanwhile, we've all seen how our President likes to hijack medical supplies, to the point where hospitals have marked trucks containing medical supplies as food trucks so the feds wouldn't take them. But now comes S. 3627, the Medical Supply Transparency and Delivery Act, which would help bring an end to this Wild West state of affairs by requiring our government to coordinate requests for medical supplies from states and localities, establish fair pricing for these supplies, and communicate with states and localities a whole hell of a lot better than they've been doing. Don't suppose we shouldn't leave such matters to our federal government, particularly this one, but COVID-19 doesn't respect state boundaries, as all those too-early-reopening red states are finding out as we speak, amirite? So Daily Kos helps you tell your Congressfolk to help get medical supplies where they're needed by passing the Medical Supply Transparency and Delivery Act.
In other news, if you've missed previous opportunities to tell your Congressfolk to ban stock trading by members of Congress, then Demand Progress still helps you do that. We've long heard that our leaders don't need to follow the rules because they can be trusted to do the right thing, but that's un-American, if I may be blunt -- our duty as Americans demands that we never "trust" our leaders, but always hold them to the high standards that come with their leadership positions! Of course, with our current President apparently running a months-long seminar in How Not to Lead, I guess it's easy to see how we got confused. But with the FBI now formally investigating Sen. Burr's massive stock dump after he received a briefing on how bad COVID-19 was about to be, and with too many other members of Congress (roll call! Kelly Loeffler! James Inhofe! Dianne Feinstein! Donna Shalala!) under public scrutiny for doing similar things, we should now have enough evidence that we can't trust our leaders to place our interests above their own.
Finally, if you've missed previous opportunities to tell our Interior Secretary to stop cutting the royalties that oil and gas corporations must pay to drill on public lands, then Penn Environment still helps you do that. One fine day -- preferably after we support renewable energy much better than we currently do -- we won't allow any pollution on public lands! But until then, they shouldn't pay less to the taxpayer (i.e., you) for the privilege! That's right, when gas and oil corporations get to drill on the land that belongs to the American people, they have to pay the American people for the privilege -- which means if our government rolls back drilling royalties, they are taking food out of your mouth. No, I think that's a perfectly valid way of seeing it -- your money pays for the services you need and deserve, and when you have less money (as you would, if our Administration continues to get its way on this matter), you get fewer services or worse services. And you're an American! So you don't have to put up with that.