President Donald Trump has told White House staff to continue working on an executive order if Congress does not finalize a new stimulus package.
Here’s what you need to know.
Before leaving for Ohio today, Trump tweeted, “As I left the Ohio Oval Office, I advised my staff to continue working on an executive order regarding lower payroll taxes, protections from payroll taxes. evictions, unemployment extensions and student loan repayment options. ”
Trump wants at least these policies – reduced payroll taxes, eviction protections, unemployment benefits and student loan repayment options – to be included in the next stimulus package. Trump is also keen to including the second dunning checks too much. The Senate is expected to start summer recess the day after tomorrow, although Congress may forgo the vacation to stay in session in order to finalize a stimulus deal. Otherwise, Trump has repeatedly said he could use executive orders if Congress does not act. Based on Trump’s tweet, here are some policies that could be included in a Trump presidential decree:
Reduction of social charges
Trump has repeatedly said he wants to suspend payroll taxes and that he wants payroll taxes cut in the next stimulus package. Although Congress did not include a payroll tax cut in the Heals Act, Trump is apparently willing to pursue payroll tax reduction by executive order. By suspending or reducing employer payroll taxes, an employer could save money to spend on other priorities and potentially forgo layoffs or time off. This could help stimulate an economic recovery and provide liquidity to struggling businesses. Social security tax exemptions, by definition, exclude the unemployed or retirees. They also translate into lower revenues for the federal government, especially for social security and medicare. Legal experts have raised questions, in connection with the separation of powers, as to whether a president and not Congress has the power to cut taxes. Under Section I of the United States Constitution, only Congress has the power to “levy and collect taxes.”
Previously, Trump supported simplifying federal student loan repayment plans to avoid confusion among borrowers and make them more manageable. Like most Republicans in Congress and US Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos, Trump has not supported the immediate and outright cancellation of student loans. Many student loan borrowers have applied what the new stimulus package means for student loans. That said, the Heals Act includes a new proposal for student loan repayment, but does not include outright cancellation of the student loan. Senator Lamar Alexander (R-TN), who chairs the Senate Committee on Health, Education, Work and Pensions, proposed a new student loan repayment plan in the Heals Act which, among other things, provides student loan relief to borrowers without income. Under Alexander’s plan, if you have no income, you would not make any federal student loan payments until you earn an income. If you have income, your monthly federal student loan payments would be based on 10% of discretionary income. Similar to current income-oriented repayment plans, a borrower could qualify for a federal student loan forgiveness after 20 or 25 years of student loan repayment.
Will the Cares Act student loan relief be extended? Trump said student loans could be suspended for “additional periods.” The Cares Act provided multiple benefits for student loans, including suspending federal student loan payments and setting 0% interest rates on federal student loans until September 30. suspends student loan payments for borrowers with no income. It’s unclear whether Trump’s potential actions would mirror Alexander’s plan or take an alternate path. Importantly, prior to the Cares Act, following the Covid-19 pandemic, Trump used a 60-day executive order to suspend student loan payments, set 0% interest rates for federal student loans, and stop federal student loan debt collection.
Trump says he wants to extend unemployment benefits. The unemployment insurance benefit of $ 600 per week ended in July, and Congress did not agree to extend these additional benefits before expiration. In 49 states, beneficiaries received their last unemployment check on July 25, and in New York, beneficiaries received weekly unemployment benefits for the last time on July 26. In the Heals Act, Senate Republicans proposed reducing unemployment benefits to about “70% wage replacement.” . “The salary replacement would amount to about $ 200 per week under this proposal. Many Republicans believed that the $ 600 a week in unemployment benefits discourages recipients from returning to work. Senator Mitt Romney (R-UT) and other Senate Republicans proposed an alternative plan to extend unemployment benefits. However, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) has now said he would be prepared to support unemployment benefits of $ 600 a week if the White House agrees.
Protection against expulsion
Trump says he wants to protect Americans from losing their homes to eviction as a result of Covid-19. The Cares Act imposed a 120-day moratorium on evictions. However, this moratorium on evictions expired on July 25, 2020. As a result of the Covid-19 pandemic, states such as New York, California, Texas and Florida may experience the highest number of evictions in based on rent costs and unemployment rate. More than 40 million Americans have claimed unemployment benefits as a result of Covid-19, and many tenants have been disproportionately affected by Covid-19, including losing their jobs in industries such as travel and hospitality. Senator Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) is protecting the Tenant Protection from Evictions and Fees Act, which would end evictions until March 2021. While not included in the Care Act, the Senate could extend the provisions of the Cares Act if Congress decides to offer additional relief to tenants. Representative Maxine Waters (D-CA) also introduced the Emergency Housing Protection and Assistance Act of 2020 to the House of Representatives to provide $ 100 billion in emergency assistance to tenants, extend the Cares Law’s moratorium on evictions until March 2021 and provide $ 75 billion in relief for homeowners. It is not clear whether Trump’s potential executive order would incorporate parts of these proposals or include an alternate path.
When will Congress agree on the next stimulus package? It depends on who you ask. Some say a deal could come next week, while others say Democrats and Republicans are too far apart. Based on this timing of key stimuli, Congress was expected to reach an agreement by August 7. It now seems unlikely, which could put off a stimulus deal until next week. It appears that Congress is agreeing to stimulus checks of $ 1,200. However, Trump also noted that he wants a second stimulus check over $ 1,200. If Congress cannot come to an agreement, it is possible that Trump will issue executive orders on these policy proposals, and potentially more.