Feeble and abusive attempts by Trump to seize legislative power slashes aid for unemployed and pillages Social Security

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, U.S. Rep. Bill Pascrell, Jr. (D-NJ-09) hammered the Trump Administration’s rampant abuse of executive actions as Republicans continue to dither on the next round of coronavirus relief. While the House passed the HEROES Act in May, Trump and Senate Republicans continue to delay as expanded unemployment benefits expired last week and the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) supporting workers and small businesses expired Saturday. The House’s bill, which has been held up in the Senate for three months, would expand unemployment benefits and the PPP, provide needed financial relief to Americans, and support state and local governments through this crisis.

“Donald Trump’s executive action is a hoax on the American people to cover up for congressional Republicans’ inability to take this pandemic seriously,” said Rep. Pascrell. “Unable to grasp the reality of the crisis and standing before a sea of wealthy country club members, Trump announced a series of short-sighted faux solutions akin to putting a band-aid on a broken leg. These empty executive actions leave out many Americans in desperate need of assistance. Trump is trying to force already cash-strapped states to consider cutting essential services to provide an unemployment insurance cut. Suspending the payroll tax does not solve today’s problems for those unemployed and is unlikely to benefit those still working. The fact is that employers are likely to continue to withhold taxes without a clear exoneration of liability for these taxes, which can only be provided with Congressional action. In any case, the tax bill will eventually come due. Moreover, it will cause irreparable harm to millions of Social Security beneficiaries nationwide and potentially affect workers’ benefits in the future.  Trump’s housing action are short of relief promised and will only cause more American families’ debt to pile up.

“His actions do nothing to increase our testing capacity, ensure our children can receive an education, or help hungry families eat. If Trump were serious about addressing this crisis, he would support our HEROES Act which provides funds for states and localities, support for front line workers, schools, rental assistance, food assistance, and continues the $600-per-week relief until this crisis is behind us. The House passed the HEROES Act providing needed COVID relief 86 days ago. Trump and Republicans wasted months ignoring the problem, and weeks negotiating with themselves on a pathetic proposal that is equal parts cruel and inefficient. Instead of abusing executive authority to make up for his party’s incompetence, Trump and his flacks should take negotiations seriously. The continued failure of the Republican party to care is forcing unconscionable suffering on the American people.”