In a move that seems designed to wreck the U.S. economy right as Joe Biden is taking office as president, Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin announced Thursday that he would not extend emergency lending programs that have been instrumental in stabilizing financial markets during the ongoing coronavirus pandemic, according to the Washington Post:
“Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin on Thursday said he would not extend most of the emergency lending programs run in tandem with the Federal Reserve, a move the central bank immediately criticized, citing the fragile recovery.
“The Fed’s exceedingly rare public response reflected a government divided on how to act as the pandemic surges across the nation, threatening a new wave of shutdowns and marking an inflection point of the economic recovery.”
Mnuchin’s decision immediately drew condemnation across the political spectrum.
Sen. Ron Wyden (D-OR) said in a statement :
“Secretary Mnuchin is removing critical support from a weak economy against the Federal Reserve’s wishes. This is economic sabotage.”
And Jason Furman, who served as a key economist during the Obama administration, warned:
“This is tying the hands of the United States in responding to this crisis.”
Bruce Bartlett, a top economic adviser to former president Ronald Reagan, accused Mnuchin of trying to crash the U.S. economy right as Joe Biden takes office in 2021:
“Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin knows that Biden has won and is moving to tank the economy the day he takes office.”
CNN global affairs analyst Bianna Golodryga contrasted Mnuchin’s reckless action with efforts taken when George W. Bush was leaving office in 1992:
During the 2008 financial crisis, Hank Paulson worked tirelessly for a smooth transition after Obama’s victory, including leaving the decision on how to use the remainder of TARP $ up to Obama. Mnuchin is playing with fire here, just like his boss. https://t.co/Bq3eH6isNG
— Bianna Golodryga (@biannagolodryga) November 19, 2020
Make no mistake: Mnuchin’s move is nothing short of an attack on the American economy and the people. It’s a final “fuck you” from the Trump administration, which cannot seem to accept the fact that the incumbent has been rejected by a majority of the American people. Mnuchin should be charged and placed on trial for crimes against the United States.