President Donald Trump on Saturday signed a series of executive orders that establish some economic relief measures in the face of the financial blow of the pandemic in the United States, after blaming the Democrats in Congress for the stalemate in the negotiations to approve a second package of stimulus.
One of these measures provides for the extension until the end of the year of unemployment benefits to millions of Americans affected by the pandemic and the consequent economic impact.
The executive action also provides for the suspension of the salary tax until the end of this year, the extension of the moratorium on evictions for non-payment of rent and the suspension of the payment of student loans indefinitely.
However, the extent of Trump's authority to take these actions is unclear. Its executive orders would be vulnerable to legal challenges, as it is Congress, not the executive, that is responsible for allocating these funds. “They will probably sue me. But we'll see, "he said on Friday when questioned by a reporter.
The president took advantage of the press conference to make campaign promises and attack his main political opponent in the face of the November elections , Democratic candidate Joe Biden, as well as insisting once again on questioning the security of voting by mail. amplifying falsehoods without proof, at a time when a good part of the country has turned to that option due to the pandemic.
Trump prepares executive order to extend unemployment assistanceAug. 8, 202002: 17
"(The Democrats) want to steal the elections," he said during a press conference from Trump National Golf Club Bedminster, in New Jersey,
Trump said he would act by executive order after talks between Congressional Democrats and the White House on a second COVID-19 economic relief package ended without a deal on Friday.
"I will act under my authority as president to give Americans the relief they need," Trump told reporters during an appearance at his Bedminster, NJ, golf club on Friday night.
[The United States adds 1.8 million jobs in July, but continues with the highest rate on record]
One of the most disputed points with the Democrats during the negotiations was the amount to be awarded to the beneficiary families of additional unemployment benefits due to the coronavirus crisis. Previously it was $ 600 a week. Democrats wanted to keep this same amount, but Republicans objected, suggesting lowering it to $ 200 per week.
The measure to suspend the wage tax would not help unemployed workers, who do not pay the tax when they are out of work, and would face bipartisan opposition in Congress , according to The Associated Press. The cut, a long-voiced wish by Trump, would affect payroll taxes that are meant to cover Medicare and Social Security benefits.
[Financial support of $ 600 weekly for the unemployed ends]
This Friday's meeting between Republicans and Democrats was the last opportunity to reach an agreement in Congress that would allow the benefits and aid to be extended to the unemployed and businesses affected by the economic impact caused by the coronavirus.
With information from NBC News and MSNBC.