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Obama Adviser: Gov't Should Mail Out Masks Instead of Stimulus Checks

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A former Obama White House chief economic adviser said that an effective stimulus plan would be sending Americans masks and ensuring they wear them in a CNBC interview on Thursday.

Jason Furman, who served as chair of the White House Council of Economic Advisers from 2013 to 2017, said masks can do more for recovery than monetary or fiscal policy in an interview for CNBC’s “Closing Bell.”

“A fiscal stimulus plan that would have incredibly high bang for the buck would be for the government to print out masks,” Furman said.

“And mail them out to every American and tell every American to wear them.”

He continued: “There’s really not a lot monetary or fiscal policy can do in the face of an out-of-control virus. A mask is one of the steps that can control that virus.”

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“It’s really not hard,” Furman added.

There were more than 55,000 new COVID-19 cases by the end of the day on Thursday, according to The New York Times.

Republican Gov. Greg Abbott of Texas issued a statewide face mask mandate on Thursday as the number of cases in the state continues to increase, according to the The Texas Tribune.

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California issued a similar order in June.

Several states have experienced surges in cases in the past week, with California, Arizona and Texas reporting new hospitalization highs, according to The Times.

President Donald Trump has shied away from a national face mask mandate.

“I don’t know if you need mandatory, because you have many places in the country where people stay very long distance,” Trump said in a Fox Business interview on Wednesday.

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