White House recruits Davis, Duckworth, Durbin to advise on reopening economy

State News

WASHINGTON, D.C. (WTVO/WMBD) — The Trump administration has invited U.S. Sen. Tammy Duckworth (D-Ill.) and U.S. Sen. Dick Durbin (D-Ill.) and U.S. Rep. Rodney Davis (R-Ill.) to serve on a bipartisan task force to advise on reopening the economy.

According to Politico, lawmakers from the Senate and the House received invitations on Wednesday.

Duckworth released the following statement:

For the sake of the nearly 25,000 Americans who have already lost their lives to COVD-19—and the countless more that will succumb in the weeks and months ahead—I wish Donald Trump had been as eager to prepare our country for this pandemic as he is to rush towards normalcy when his own experts are warning ‘we’re not there yet.’

As a member of this task force, I will do everything in my power to remind Donald Trump of his responsibility to protect public health. He needs to stop blaming others for his Administration’s failures, ensure universal access to testing and vastly expand contact tracing efforts. He should more fully use the Defense Production Act as well as other authorities to bring the supply chain in line, ramp up PPE production and ensure that state and local governments have the supplies and resources they need to protect our communities.

It is times like these that I am heartened our Constitution ensures that Governors and local authorities are the ones who will make the final decision about when it is safe to return to normal life. We all want to reach the other side of this crisis, but Donald Trump plugging his ears and ignoring science will put more Americans at greater risk and make a quick and safe recovery even harder.

U.S. Sen. Tammy Duckworth

Rep. Davis released the following statement:

Up until last month, we had months of record-low unemployment and historic economic growth, but this pandemic has halted everything and now we need to figure out how we get through this and back to a booming economy,” said Davis. “I believe we can start by ensuring the administration has the resources needed to continue to implement successful programs, like the Paycheck Protection Program, to help businesses now. I’m thankful for President Trump’s leadership on this and I look forward to working with the administration, this task force, and others to safely get Americans back to work and our economy back on track.”

U.S. Rep. Rodney Davis

The lawmakers named to the task force are expected to speak with President Trump over the phone Thursday. The following lawmakers were named along with the three Illinois politicians:

Democratic Sens. Tom Carper of Delaware, Dianne Feinstein of California, Maggie Hassan of New Hampshire, Martin Heinrich of New Mexico, Angus King of Maine, Amy Klobuchar of Minnesota, Patrick Leahy of Vermont, Jacky Rosen of Nevada, Kyrsten Sinema of Arizona, Mark Warner of Virginia and Sheldon Whitehouse of Rhode Island.

Among the Senate Republicans asked to be on the task force are Senate HELP Committee Chairman Lamar Alexander of Tennessee and Sens. John Barrasso of Wyoming, Rob Portman of Ohio, Joni Ernst of Iowa, Josh Hawley of Missouri, Mike Braun of Indiana, Shelley Moore Capito of West Virginia, Pat Toomey of Pennsylvania, John Cornyn of Texas, Ted Cruz of Texas and Kevin Cramer of North Dakota.

In the House, Democrats include Reps. Henry Cuellar of Texas, Ted Deutch of Florida, Josh Gottheimer of New Jersey, Ro Khanna of California, Derek Kilmer of Washington, John Larson of Connecticut, Stephanie Murphy of Florida, Jimmy Panetta of California and Tom Suozzi of New York.

Among House Republicans invited is House Minority Whip Steve Scalise of Louisiana, Greg Walden of Oregon and Patrick McHenry of North Carolina.

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