WASHINGTON — For the first time in history, the U.S. government is intentionally putting the American economy into a recession — requiring businesses to stop operating and workers to stay home, to stop the spread of the deadly novel coronavirus. This has never been done before, and the stakes are incredibly high. If we act quickly to keep businesses afloat and workers employed, there is a strong chance we can create a “V-shaped” recession — a steep, rapid decline, followed by an equally steep, rapid recovery once the danger from the virus has been mitigated. But if we delay, and millions of businesses go under, we may enter not just a recession but a full-fledged depression.

But at this critical moment, when Americans needed their leaders in Congress to rise above their differences and work together to save the country, Democrats decided to take the American economy hostage by blocking a $1.8 trillion bipartisan emergency relief bill.

Follow Marc A. Thiessen on Twitter, @marcthiessen.

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