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Stevenson on pandemic effects and opportunities

September 29, 2021

This week, Betsey Stevenson spoke to NPR and PBS about the economic fallout of the COVID-19 pandemic, from supply chains around the world, to a changing workforce, and U.S. government debt.

"COVID's affecting the entire world. There are entire factories shut down because too many people in the factory have COVID for it to be able to operate," Betsey Stevenson told NPR Consider This. "If what we really care about is solving supply chain problems around the globe and the goods that are coming into the United States and our ability to sell abroad, then we have to be thinking not about just vaccinating Americans, but we have to think about vaccinating the world because we can't solve supply chain problems when there are people around the globe that are getting sick and dying."

She spoke to NPR All Things Considered about the U.S. labor shortage due to workers looking for better jobs or different industries.

"The great thing about there being so many openings out there is that means there's lots of opportunities for you as a worker," she said. "We're seeing a lot of them changing occupations. They're looking for better opportunities, and they're holding out for better wages. And they can afford to hold out for better wages because there are so many opportunities out there. But that holding on for what you want, that's creating a slowdown of workers being allocated to new jobs."

In light of Biden's multitrillion dollar agenda hitting Congressional roadblocks, Stevenson spoke to PBS about U.S. debt.

"There’s no reason to have a debt ceiling. What we need to do is have real honest discussion about how much revenue we raised and how much we spend, and that will determine how much debt we have," she said. "The way to deal with your debt is not to rack it up and then fail to pay it. A reminder that we owe this money to the American people. The American people want their money back. So, we can't just stop paying the people that have generously loaned the federal government money. What we have to do is figure out whether we want to raise more revenue to get the debt down. I think there's a lot of proposals on the Hill to raise more revenue."

Watch and listen to the news items featuring Stevenson below