“If the president wants the economy to be on an upward trajectory in early October with early voting, then getting the policy right in July and August is very important,” said Michael Strain, director of economic policy studies at the right-leaning American Enterprise Institute…

The amount of money Congress decides to pump into the economy as part of the next aid package will have huge effects on unemployed Americans who have relied on expanded benefits in recent months, and on state and local governments struggling to stay afloat with their tax revenue tumbling.

Getting more schools in shape to open by Labor Day is perhaps most critical. “You can’t have an open economy and closed schools,” Strain said. “State and local policymakers seem to want to have both at the same time and that is just not an option. Workers can’t go to work in many cases if there are kids are at home. For those working at home with kids, they are working reduced schedules.”…

Senior administration officials are exploring ways to incentivize states and cities to open by redirecting funds or giving extra cash to districts, or earmarking parts of the upcoming stimulus package for state and local aid to be spent on the associated costs of opening schools during a pandemic.