Trump Takes Matters Into His Own Hands

Student Loan Relief

Expanded Unemployment Benefits

Trump authorizes an extra $400 per week. "It wasn't their fault, it was China's Fault."

Protection From Evictions

Eviction protections applies only to government loans. Taxpayers are on the hook.

The WSJ reports "A White House spokesman said the agencies were considering measures to prohibit evictions of any tenants due to the pandemic."

If so, that openly invites people not to pay with property owners are on the hook. It's bad policy. 

$400 or $300 Weekly?

Of the extra $400, Trump said the Federal government would pick up 75% of the cost. 

That means it's really $300. 

It's unclear how states will respond. It's also unclear what happens if cash-strapped states don't have the money.

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How Convenient

The extra benefit only goes to December 6. The election is Tuesday November 3.

After the election, would Trump really give a damn? 

The payroll tax cut lasts until December 31.

Unconstitutional?

The following snip courtesy of the Wall Street Journal.

“This is blatantly and absurdly unconstitutional,” Rep. Jamie Raskin (D., Md.) said of the president’s actions on unemployment benefits and the payroll tax. “The president is literally trying to steal away the powers that Congress has over spending and taxing.”

The tax deferral is legal under a tax code section that gives the administration the authority to pause tax deadlines after a presidential disaster declaration. It is the same law the government used to delay the April 15 tax-filing deadline to July.

The payroll tax change doesn’t change the underlying obligation, which means that workers, and perhaps employers, would still be on the hook for the taxes eventually. Mr. Trump said he would press Congress to turn the deferral into an actual tax cut.

It is far from certain that employers would actually stop withholding and submitting the payroll taxes. That is because they may be concerned about having to withhold more taxes from workers next year, or about being stuck with the obligation themselves.

How Will States, Employers, Democrats Respond?

Although the payroll tax cut is legal, not even the Republicans supported it. Moreover, it creates such a looming liability that employers may not go with the program.

The rest of Trump's measures are more than a bit questionable constitutionally.

We find out how the states and Democrats respond shortly.

Mish