Factbox: Tax Cuts, Reduced Unemployment Benefits: What’s in Trump’s Coronavirus Executive Orders

After failing to reach a deal with the U.S. Congress for a fresh round of coronavirus pandemic relief, President Donald Trump signed a series of executive orders aimed at pumping up America’s pandemic-hit economy.

The orders are likely to face some legal challenges.

UNEMPLOYMENT RELIEF

Trump’s order cuts enhanced federal unemployment benefits – a lifeline for the tens of millions of Americans thrown out of work during the pandemic – from $600 to $400 per week. Democrats had been lobbying to extend the original $600 a week enhanced benefits, which expired on July 31.

Trump proposes taking most of the money from the coffers of the Federal Emergency Management Agency – $44 billion, according to the order – with 25% of the money coming from states.

It’s not clear how Trump will convince state governments, whose revenues have been hard hit by the crisis, to pony up their proposed share.

Trump called the reduced payments “generous.”

A PAYROLL TAX CUT

Trump’s first order waives the payroll tax that funds Social Security in a bid to inject extra money directly into salaried employees’ pockets. Trump has been pushing the idea for a while but it has found little support in Congress from Democrats or his fellow Republicans.

The executive order says the cut comes into effect on Sept. 1, but Trump said it “most likely” would be retroactive to Aug. 1 and translate into “bigger paychecks for working families.”

EVICTIONS

Trump’s order protecting homeowners and renters from evictions is unlikely to face a challenge from Democrats; indeed, House of Representatives Speaker Nancy Pelosi this week encouraged the move. But it isn’t clear how it will be executed.

The order directs authorities to provide “temporary financial assistance” to renters and homeowners “struggling to meet their monthly rental or mortgage obligations.”

Even Trump seemed a little hazy on the order’s ultimate effects, saying “we don’t want people being evicted and the act that I am signing will solve that problem – largely, hopefully, completely.”

STUDENT LOANS

Trump said that interest on student loan payments – frozen since March – would be suspended until the end of the year.

(Reporting by Raphael Satter; Editing by Scott Malone and Sonya Hepinstall)

Responses

  1. Trump was in a losing spot. Republicans are a minority in the house, and in the senate, although a majority, they are divided against themselves. They can’t get enough unity to pass anything with even a simple majority. This left only the democratic leaders to negotiate a bill. If Trump had actually made a deal with Pelosi and Schumer, who had proposed meeting at a midpoint number ($2 trn, up from the Republican senate leaders’ proposal of $1 trn, down from Nancy’s $3.4 trn, which actually passed the house in May), there would have been a bill. McConnell didn’t want this, but he couldn’t control his own caucus, so he he’s allowing the senate to go on August vacation, meaning a vote is impossible before September.

    The Republican moves are designed to make the only action possible be Trump whipping out his magic Sharpie and writing executive orders (and using the Constitution for Kleenex), instead of going along with the intent of the Constitution and bending to the will of Congress.

  2. Scotty the Imposter aka the Troll, not everyone lives in your fantasy world consumed by fake news and left wing hack sites.

  3. “Wow, Phoenix, Phyllis, General Confusion and Ed came out with some interesting and completely fake BS.” Chuck

    I am confused, Chuck.

    WHAT fake BS did I post?

    King Donald The Loser still needs to be re-elected or else steal the throne, to keep power.

    King Donald The Loser has done almost nothing for the poor, the weak, or those on the edge, but Congress threw trillions at the wealthy and big corporations. They want to hand impunity to corporations, but they haven’t pulled that trigger – yet.

    King Donald The Loser has publicly, and I must admit, foolishly said that His Majesty will defund SS and Medicare, IF he can get his royal ass re-elected, in November.

    In what way is ANY of that BS?

    I ask again, Chuck: Do you agree with defunding SS and Medicare? If so, why? Both of these programs are lifelines for millions of us. How can YOU possibly be against them?

    If you don’t speak out against his plan now, then that means that you are for it.

  4. John and Chuck it’s hard to comprehend how they can live in their fantasy worlds. Proof that fake news and left wing hack sites warp peoples’ minds and morph their brains into such debilitating states.

  5. I see the trolls are in overdrive on this one. If you can’t beat them with the truth then fall back on the liberal playbook and lie. You folks forgot to throw in racist.

  6. Wow, Penis, Syphilis, Squat Dogfart aka Gen. Delusion and dead Ed came out with some interesting and completely fake BS. I’m surprised they’d waste their time like this. They could write fiction if it wasn’t so ridiculous. Oh well, they could always write it on toilet paper, so easy to flush that way.

  7. Now, why would there be any legal challenges? Oh, because the Democrats don’t care about the victims of the Chinese bio warfare, the Democrats can’t criticize Trump for giving help, the Democrats don’t get any credit and, finally, the Democrats can’t attach their long list of special interest spending that has nothing to do with the epidemic. Lying, cheating, corrupt Democrats.

  8. I see Scotty the Imposter aka the Troll is still spewing his supposition thoughts from being in his fantasy world.

  9. This was the ONLY way to get $$$ to be masses, once the Wicked Witch of the West and Humpty Dumpty showed how really tough they were!!! oops guess that didn’t work!!!!

  10. Ed – I’m expecting a hefty bill come tax time next year.

    And General, I agree and the president has been extremely transparent on this.

  11. Phyllis:

    What do you think / feel about King Donald The Loser defunding Medicare and Social Security, IF he can get re-elected in November after promising that?

  12. UNEMPLOYMENT RELIEF: “It’s not clear how Trump will convince state governments, whose revenues have been hard hit by the crisis, to pony up their proposed share.”
    LOL…we are talking about the self-professed “greatest deal maker.” Just review his success at past deals….
    There is the North Korea denuclearization plan.
    Then we have the re-negotiation of JCPOA–the Iran denuclearization deal.
    Then we have the China trade deal.
    We had the 2018-19 government shutdown over funding for the security SYMBOL at the U.S.-Mexican border.
    Even the Mexican Trade agreement had to be negotiated by Speaker Pelosi to obtain the labor protections needed to gain the needed support of Congress. .

    If in Trump world, things magically disappear, perhaps they can magically appear!

  13. “I’m not sure why the president is targeting relief for those of us who don’t need it.” Ed

    It isn’t all that confusing, Ed. They still need to get re-elected, to retain their power. They still haven’t gone full-on dictatorship – yet.

  14. “Surely, there is a better way to target only those impacted.” Phoenix

    You are confused, Phoenix.

    This administration is not really interested in helping people affected by the pandemic. Who did they jump up and support right away and salute with more than $2 trillion in give-aways? Not the poor or working class who ended up being affected the most. No, they paid off / bailed out their donors, big corporations and rich people. That was IMMEDIATE, WILLING, even ENTHUSIASTIC.

    People? What say so? They still have done the bare minimum and only that was halfhearted and done begrudgingly. They are even trying to cut back on even THAT meager support.

    Other countries looked after their people much better than ours ever will. Disgusting.

  15. I kind of agree with Phoenix on this one. I’ve been fortunate enough to not need any assistance so far. I’m not going to argue with the government letting me keep more of the money that I’ve earned in my next few paychecks, but I’m not sure why the president is targeting relief for those of us who don’t need it.

    What’s more concerning is that the language of the order makes it sound as if this deferral may have to be paid back sometime in the future. It says that the Secretary of the Treasury shall investigate a way to eliminate the obligation to repay these, but we all know that “shall” is a slippery word that means different things to different people, and that our current Secretary views that word as meaning “optional“ instead of “required”, depending on how it suits his (or his boss’) whims.

    In any case, an extra 9% of minimum wage isn’t going to be much of an incentive to get off of unemployment.

  16. The payroll tax cut is a weird way to “help” although he has said he is going to make these payroll cuts permanent if elected so its less about helping people and more about his long term goal to trash Social Security.

    Also, this is another benefit I’ll receive when i have not been impacted by the pandemic financially with the exception of my long term investments. Surely, there is a better way to target only those impacted.

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