House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, a Democrat, on Sunday called the executive orders signed by President Donald Trump to alleviate the economic effects of the pandemic “unconstitutional swill” after the collapse of negotiations with progressives.
“In fact, what the president did, and I agree with what the Republican senator said, is unconstitutional swill,” Pelosi told Fox News.
The politician, who has led the so far failed negotiations with the White House to launch a new economic stimulus package, was referring to a statement issued Saturday by Sen. Ben Sasse, who criticized Trump’s orders.
The president carried out his threats yesterday if talks with the Democrats failed and signed four bills at his golf club in Bedminster, N.J., providing for an additional benefit for the unemployed, a delay in paying payroll taxes, a moratorium on student loan repayments and a halt to federal housing evictions.
Pelosi said it is illusory to think there will be a freeze on evictions: “While it (the decree) contains the illusion of saying we’re going to have a moratorium on evictions, it says ‘I’m going to ask the kids in charge to study whether it’s feasible.
“While (Trump) says he’s going to do (eliminate) the payroll tax, when what he’s doing is undermining Social Security and Medicare, so these are illusions,” said the Speaker of the House.
In her opinion, Trump’s orders do not provide funds for additional benefits, but rather put on the table a “complicated formula” that will take time until the money reaches the pockets of Americans.
In recent days, Trump had slipped that he could use his executive power to push through the measures, although the legal basis on which he is acting is questioned by Democrats, who have threatened to take his decisions to court if Congress, which is responsible for determining federal spending, is left out.
Neither Pelosi nor Senate Democratic majority leader Chuck Schumer has said whether they will finally sue Trump’s actions.
Asked about the legality of these bills, Schumer told ABC News on Sunday: “Well, you know, I’ll leave that to the lawyers (…) It’s not going to go into effect (the orders) in most places for weeks or months because it’s armed in a crazy way,” he reflected.
The Democrats and the White House held a new round of negotiations between Thursday and Friday to push through an economic stimulus package, which did not come to fruition.
Progressives offered Thursday to lower their request by $1 trillion for a $2.4 trillion rescue package, but made it a condition that the White House increase its offer from a total of $1 trillion to $2 trillion.
However, White House negotiators, Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin and Chief of Staff Mark Meadows called the Democratic proposal “impossible.