“I fear we are in for a once-in-a-lifetime shock to our economy that will make 2008 look small,” Gary Gensler, a former chairman of the Commodity Futures Trading Commission, said in a telephone interview.

Gensler was one of more than a half-dozen current and former government officials, Democratic and Republican, who told NBC News that the White House and Congress should be looking at injecting a sum much larger than — even double — the $1 trillion stimulus package proposed by President Donald Trump…

“The amounts of support they’re talking about would be about right if we were dealing with a normal recession, but that’s not what this is — this is much broader and much deeper than any recession we’ve ever seen,” Tony Fratto, who was a White House and Treasury Department official during President George W. Bush’s administration, said in an e-mail exchange.

“They’re estimating 1 trillion, but it probably needs to be $2 trillion — just from fiscal spending providing direct support,” he said. “They also need to be much faster. We needed it yesterday. Every day of delay means more hundreds of thousands of Americans losing their jobs. Speed is critical.”