Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said the US unemployment rate could soar to a staggering 20 percent if Congress fails to pass a $1 trillion coronavirus stimulus package.
Mnuchin shared the potentially disastrous outlook in a closed-door Tuesday night meeting with Republican senators, a source told Reuters.
The treasury secretary was trying to persuade the Republican lawmakers to pass the bailout package that would include checks to Americans facing financial hardship amid the coronavirus outbreak sweeping the nation.
Mnuchin’s spokeswoman, Monica Crowley, said he wasn’t issuing an economic forecast, but instead was just illustrating the potential risks of inaction.
“During the meeting with Senate Republicans today, Secretary Mnuchin used several mathematical examples for illustrative purposes, but he never implied this would be the case,” she said in an emailed statement.
Earlier Tuesday on Capitol Hill, Mnuchin revealed the massive scope of the proposed stimulus plan.
“This is a very unique situation for this economy. We’ve put a proposal on the table that would inject a trillion dollars into the economy that is on top of the $300 billion from the IRS deferrals,” he said.
With Post wires