Amidst ongoing deliberations surrounding a second stimulus package, President Donald Trump signed an executive order on Saturday in an effort to extend economic relief programs. His decision came after another deadline passed without Congress coming to an agreement regarding the next stimulus plan. What is covered under Trump's executive order? From unemployment benefits to a payroll tax holiday, the president called for numerous initiatives amidst the ongoing coronavirus pandemic.
A day before he signed his executive order, Trump spoke to reporters during a press conference held at his golf club in Bedminster, New Jersey. According to CBS News, the president said that "the lawyers" were looking into the language for his memos and noted that he would "probably" get sued for taking such an action. "It would be really nice to do it with the Democrats, but they're only interested in one thing and that's protecting people that have not done a good job at managing cities and states and... Nothing to do with COVID... or little to do," he said regarding the $1 trillion that Democrats are seeking in order to help states and local governments. He added, "They want to be able to make up for many, many years and in some cases decades of bad management."
As Trump said, lawmakers on both sides of the aisle have said that his decision to implement an executive order is "unconstitutional." So, it's unclear exactly what will come of this. But, until they get everything sorted out, here's everything you need to know about Trump's executive orders.
Trump called for an extension to unemployment benefits. Under the CARES Act, jobless Americans received an additional $600 per week in unemployment benefits. Although, those benefits expired on July 31. The president's order called for an additional $400 weekly supplement to federal unemployment insurance. However, there already seem to be issues associated with this move. States will have to foot $100 of the $400 total to individuals, with the federal government's contribution capped at $300. Americans will also have to first receive the $100 from the state before getting the rest of the funding. On top of that, experts have said that this program could take months to implement, meaning that it could be some time before Americans are even able to receive this payment.prevnext
Trump's executive order and memorandums also called for an eviction moratorium. This will extend the temporary halt of evictions and will also relieve the financial burden on homeowners and renters. "With the failure of the Congress to act, my Administration must do all that it can to help vulnerable populations stay in their homes in the midst of this pandemic," his order read. "Those who are dislocated from their homes may be unable to shelter in place and may have more difficulty maintaining a routine of social distancing. They will have to find alternative living arrangements, which may include a homeless shelter or a crowded family home and may also require traveling to other States."
"In addition, evictions tend to disproportionately affect minorities, particularly African Americans and Latinos," the note added. "Unlike the Congress, I cannot sit idly and refuse to assist vulnerable Americans in need. Under my Administration, minorities achieved the lowest unemployment rates on record, and we will not let COVID-19 erase these gains by causing short-term dislocations that could well have long-term consequences."prevnext
Student Loan Forbearance
The president's executive order also claimed to extend the waiver for student loan interest for federal borrowers. Although, individuals can still make payments on their student loans if they wish to do so during this time. "In light of the national emergency declared on March 13, 2020, the Secretary of Education shall take action pursuant to applicable law to effectuate appropriate waivers of and modifications to the requirements and conditions of economic hardship deferments described in section 455(f)(2)(D) of the Higher Education Act of 1965, as amended, 20 U.S.C. 1087e(f)(2)(D), and provide such deferments to borrowers as necessary to continue the temporary cessation of payments and the waiver of all interest on student loans held by the Department of Education until December 31, 2020," the order stated.prevnext
One of the memorandums that Trump issued ordered Secretary of the Treasury Steven Mnuchin to defer the payroll tax from Sept. 1 to the end of the year. This initiative, which can help Americans keep more money from their paychecks, would only be available to those who make under $100,000 per year.prevnext
What Else Do You Need To Know?
One of the biggest questions that you might have concerning Trump's executive orders may tie back to economic impact payments. Since the president does not have the authority to call for additional stimulus payments, you will not be receiving an additional check via this move. Americans will have to wait until Congress is able to come to an agreement regarding another stimulus package before they can get their hands on another economic impact payment. Senate Republicans unveiled their latest plan in late July, which called for another one-time check of $1,200. So, depending on what Democrats and Republicans are able to agree to, you could be receiving an additional $1,200 sometime later this year.prev