Trump goes around Congress with four executive orders that extends jobless money, stop student loan interest, caps payroll taxes and keeps the evictions on hold….
He has essentially told Congress go home it’s his government…..
This is a direct political move to take away Democratic House Speaker Pelosi and Senate Minority Leader Schumer’s ability to leverage any gains on a stimulus bill…
It is unknown if the action is actually legal…
But the courts move slow and this will stick until the election…
Trump is sure to to try make the case that ‘he’ as the President has finally done something related to the pandemic and the economy….
President Trump signed four executive orders Saturday afternoon that seek to prolong a federal moratorium on evictions, add flexibility to student loan payments and renew additional assistance to unemployed workers, as negotiations over a pandemic relief package appeared on the brink of collapse.
Mr. Trump’s decision comes as White House officials and top congressional Democrats remained bitterly, and widely, divided on a number of critical issues and with no plans to meet again. The orders, which could face legal challenges, are unlikely to add much additional fuel to the economic recovery.
“Nancy Pelosi and Chuck Schumer have chosen to hold this vital assistance hostage,” Mr. Trump said at a news conference at his private golf club in New Jersey, his second in two days. A few dozen club guests were in attendance, and the president appeared to revel in their laughter at his jokes denouncing his political critics.
“We’ve had it,” Mr. Trump said, repeatedly referring to the executive actions as “bills,” which are passed by Congress. He used the news conference to take repeated verbal detours to praise his administration’s widely criticized response to the coronavirus, take credit for legislation passed by former President Barack Obama and attack his Democratic opponent, former Vice President Joseph R. Biden Jr.
It remains unclear what authority Mr. Trump has to act on his own and redirect funds and how effective those orders could be without federal spending. But the president’s orders reflected the extent of the divide between White House officials and top congressional Democrats as crucial benefits have expired and with no relief in sight…..
One of the executive orders aims to provide $400 in weekly unemployment aid for millions of Americans whose $600 in weekly benefits expired last month. Trump said 25 percent of this money would be paid by states, many of which are already dealing with major budget shortfalls and have pleaded with Congress for more aid.
Two of the other executive orders are related to eviction protections and student loan relief.
And the fourth executive order would seek to defer payroll tax payments from September through December for people who earn less than $100,000. The president said if he wins reelection he would seek to extend the deferral and somehow “terminate” the tax. The tax funds Social Security and Medicare benefits, and it’s unclear what will happen to those programs without the money.
The first three issues had been the subject of talks with congressional Democrats, which faltered on Friday. The payroll tax initiative is one Trump has sought for more than a year with little congressional support, and Senate Republicans left the measure out of their relief proposal.
Trump signed the orders during a press event in Bedminster, N.J. On Friday, Trump acknowledged that the executive orders could be controversial and prompt lawsuits. Democrats on Friday signaled they were still holding out hopes that talks with the White House could be revived….