U.S. taxpayers have funded more than half a trillion dollars in federal bailouts to small businesses affected by the coronavirus pandemic, but the White House is fighting disclosure of who got what.

Rep. Jennifer Wexton (D-Va.) joins the Axios Re:Cap podcast to discuss why she and many colleagues are pushing for Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin to reverse course.

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Jun 23, 2020 - Health

The pandemic isn't stopping hospitals from consolidating

Atrium Health is offering to buy a local hospital for $3 billion. Photo: Atrium Health

Hospitals that have pocketed tens of millions of dollars in federal coronavirus bailouts are still pursuing big-ticket mergers and acquisitions.

Why it matters: The pandemic has dried up big parts of hospitals' businesses, and that's why Congress established a $175 billion bailout fund to help them. At the same time, they're spending millions on lawyers and advisers to explore deals that expand their business empires.

Small businesses face post-lockdown cash crunch

A seamstress works at a sewing machine in a tailoring shop in Palm Springs, Calif. Photo: Robert Alexander/Getty Images.

U.S. macroeconomic data is broadly improving but many small businesses are facing a perilous recovery as they attempt to stay afloat after coronavirus-driven lockdowns throughout the country. That's true even for the many that received government assistance.

By the numbers: A recent poll of 7,317 small business owners by Alignable finds that 43% of firms that received money through the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) say they could be out of cash in a month or less.

Hogan Gidley leaves White House for Trump campaign

Hogan Gidley. Photo: Tom Williams/CQ-Roll Call, Inc via Getty Images

White House spokesman Hogan Gidley will leave his post to become the national press secretary for President Trump's re-election campaign, per sources with direct knowledge.

The big picture: Gidley, who has been serving as principal deputy press secretary, will join the campaign’s communications staff which is headed by Tim Murtaugh. He will fill the role previously held by Kayleigh McEnany, who is now White House press secretary.