It's time to carefully reopen the country to pull the United States out of its great economic "catastrophe," former Reagan administration budget director David Stockman told Newsmax TV.
"Lockdown nation is the greatest government-imposed catastrophe of modern times. It's administering a shock to the American economy and workers and business like we've never seen before," Stockman told Thursday's "Greg Kelly Reports."
He point to the 5.24 million unemployment claims from this week as a sign of how low the U.S. economy has sunk.
"That's 22 million [jobs unemployment claims] in four weeks, which is equal to wiping out all 22 million jobs that have been created since the end of the great recession 10 years ago," Stockman said. "We're heading into the soup and for no good reason. We have a hysteria going on in this country that is probably worse than what we had in the McCarthy era or even during the Salem Witch Trials."
Stockman called coronavirus a "very bad contagious flu" that largely poses a threat to the elderly and people with pre-existing conditions. He said people in those groups should practice social distancing and take extra precautions.
But, he said, the vast majority of Americans won't likely be affected in "any fatal way" by coronavirus. So the president needs to open up the economy as quickly, and safely, as possible.
"We can't open the economy up soon enough. We've got to get people back to work. We've got to get commerce functioning. We've got to get the economy off its back," Stockman said.
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