Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer is joining House Speaker Nancy Pelosi in speaking out against President Donald Trump's executive orders targeting coronavirus relief. Just two days after the president signed the order and three memoranda following a collapse in negotiations between members of the Trump administration and Democrats, Schumer took to Twitter to blast the move, stating that they are "hardly worth the paper they're printed on."
President Trump’s executive orders are hardly worth the paper they’re printed on. They leave out funding for:
—COVID testing, tracing & treatment— Chuck Schumer (@SenSchumer) August 10, 2020
—Our schools to safely reopen
—State & local governments
—Our 2020 elections
Trump had signed the order and three memoranda on Saturday after discussions between Schumer, Pelosi, Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin, and White House chief of staff Mark Meadows, which had been ongoing for nearly two weeks, ground to a halt. The executive actions, which are intended to bypass Congress, provide $400 in added unemployment benefits, defer payroll taxes for those earning less than $100,000 a year, extend the eviction moratorium and postpone student loan payments and forgive interest. As Schumer pointed out, however, Trump did not take any executive action to target other crucial aspects of the economy's recovery, including funding for coronavirus testing and contact tracing and schools as they reopen. He also failed to extend food assistance that has expired.
What is missing from the orders is not the only thing Schumer has issues with. In later tweets, Schumer picked apart each order and memoranda. Addressing the payroll tax cut, something the president has long supporter, Schumer called it "a backdoor way of weakening Social Security." He said that Trump's order on unemployment benefits "is put together in such a sloppy way that it'll take weeks or months for states to even implement," which could mean that "millions could lose everything before they ever see a check." Schumer went on to write that Trump's executive order on evictions is "less of an executive order and more of an 'executive suggestion,'" as it "doesn't even guarantee a moratorium on evictions, let alone identify specific funds to help people who've fallen behind on rent."
Schumer went on to declare that "Republicans must get back to the negotiating table" and craft legislation that targets the most pressing issues affecting the American people amid the pandemic. At this time, however, it remains unclear if negotiations will continue. Trump's executive order, meanwhile, will likely face legal setbacks.