Both Sides Spin CBO Report in COVID-19 Relief Debate

In the debate over competing rescue plans, those in both political parties have miscited a recent report by the Congressional Budget Office to make their case.

  • Republican Sen. Bill Cassidy suggested the unemployment benefits in the Democratic package were unnecessarily generous “because the Congressional Budget Office says they expect employment to be back to pre-COVID levels by June.” The CBO says that without any new stimulus, employment will not return to pre-COVID-19 levels until 2024.
  • White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki, pointing to the same CBO study, claimed, “A CBO report found that without any additional stimulus, our economy wouldn’t reach pre-pandemic levels until 2025.” The CBO concluded that without additional stimulus, the real gross domestic product would return to pre-pandemic levels by mid-year this year.

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