Illustration: Lazaro Gamio/Axios

The coronavirus pandemic is laying bare America's stark class inequality and, some experts say, should lead to more urgent policy conversations about housing, wages and worker rights.

Why it matters: The real measure of a city's resiliency is the ability of its residents to survive a crisis and bounce back.

  • While recovery from a natural disaster tends to focus on physical infrastructure, a public health and economic crisis like this is highlighting the deficiencies of U.S. social infrastructure, said Jeff Hebert, partner at urban planning firm HR&A and former deputy mayor and chief resilience officer for New Orleans.

Driving the news: The latest Axios-Ipsos Coronavirus Index out Wednesday finds Americans with less education and lower incomes have been far more likely to keep showing up to work (and risk getting sick or spreading the virus) or to see their work dry up completely. The affluent, meanwhile, have maintained their jobs — and economic security — virtually.

  • "This is going to drive home the consequences of economic inequality in our country and the ripple effects of that on everyone," said HR&A's Kash.

What to watch: In the wake of this crisis, Kash and Hebert expect discussions to focus on tenant rights, housing assistance, worker rights, and policies related to incomes, paid sick leave and unemployment insurance.

Emergency response is more clear cut after a natural disaster. In other words, once a hurricane dissipates, a region can focus on recovery — and lean on other regions for support.

  • That's not an option right now, because the disaster is continuing while authorities everywhere tackle a prolonged response.
  • "We're in uncharted territory right now because we're going to be in emergency response for a very long period of time," Hebert said. "Everyone's in a crisis at once."

Go deeper: How the pandemic will reshape cities

Go deeper

Dion Rabouin, author of Markets
53 mins ago - Economy & Business

Coronavirus surge is sinking consumer confidence

Data: Hamilton Place Strategies, CivicScience; Chart: Axios Visuals

The rise in coronavirus cases in certain parts of the U.S. is stunting confidence across the country, a crop of new reports show.

Driving the news: After stalling during the previous two-week period, overall economic sentiment declined for the first time in two months, according to the Economic Sentiment Index, a biweekly survey from data firm CivicScience and Hamilton Place Strategies (HPS).

Updated 2 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

  1. Politics: Obama: Trump is "jealous of COVID's media coverage."
  2. Health: Mask mandates help control the rise in coronavirus hospitalizations. Hospitals face a crush.
  3. Business: Coronavirus testing is a windfall. Winter threat spurs new surge of startup activity.
  4. Media: Pandemic causes TV providers to lose the most subscribers ever.
  5. World: Putin mandates face masks.

The GOP's monstrous math problem

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

Republicans, win or lose next week, face a big — and growing — math problem.

The state of play: They're relying almost exclusively on a shrinking demographic (white men), living in shrinking areas (small, rural towns), creating a reliance on people with shrinking incomes (white workers without college degrees) to survive.

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