The US has been heading for a recession for some time now. The virus just pulled the trigger. Some of the ways the government can attack a recession are to cut taxes, lower interest rates, and increase spending. The stimulus package does increase spending now but may not be enough. Interest rates are already low with little room to go lower. The recent tax cut has not paid for itself as promised, so revenues are lower. Basically, the tax cut and lower interest rates propped up an economy already leaning toward a recession. The Treasury Yield curve has shown a steady decline and actually inverted (1yr > 10 yr) in August 2019. Inverted yield Interest rate lower rate curves have signaled the last 7 recessions.
Since August 2019, it been positive but not by much. So the virus was the trigger, but the recession gun was primed and loaded and just ready to fire. By lowering taxes and keeping interest rates low, two of the big guns in the recession fighting arsenal are really not available to mitigate the depth and duration of this recession. All things considered: we’re boned. To be fair, that was the first time Trump acknowledged that the virus would require more than monetary policy to constrain. That alone was a huge breakthrough for the guy, wasn’t sure if he’d ever make that connection.