Just a few weeks ago, we were in the midst of the strongest economy in years. We now find ourselves with questions about what will happen to our economy due to the COVID-19 outbreak. In contrast with other times of economic uncertainty, this interruption in our economy was not caused by bad decisions or nefarious actors, nor were we nearing the end of a business cycle.
While the COVID-19 outbreak continues, drastic measures have been put in place to slow the spread. Unprecedented actions such as the closures of shops and restaurants, recommendations against gatherings of more than 10 people, and the canceling of many sporting and entertainment events have altered our very way of life.
It is clear coronavirus presents a major threat to the health of the most vulnerable among us, and Americans are rightfully taking steps to protect themselves, their families, friends, and neighbors from transmission. In addition, federal, state, and local governments have taken measures to fight against the spread of this virus, provide care for those infected, and maintain economic security.
Every ten years, our government is required by our Constitution to conduct a census of our population. This year, from March 12-20, the United States Census Bureau will send out census forms and instruction to every household in the United States. Although the form may be an inconvenience, it is of the utmost importance to our political process.
This week the Ways and Means Committee held our annual hearing with Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar. He discussed the administration’s current work on health care, the administration’s efforts for combating coronavirus, and answered questions we had on both subjects.