Our response to trump's august 8th executive order on wage replacement

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August 8th, 2020
ExtendPUA.org's Preliminary Response:

 

Trump's Legal authority to issue this order is debatable

  • By appropriating funds, Trump is attempting to circumvent the Constitution. Congress has "the power of the purse."

  • At any time, the President may revoke, modify, or make exceptions from any executive order. This puts UI in the hands of Trump instead of in concrete legislation.

  • Even IF it is legal, it is NOT safe for us.

 

Trump is offering a $400 “wage replacement” instead of the existing $600 FPUC

  • That is $800 less a month for 26 million people.

  • Only $300 of that would come from the federal government, from an existing fund created by the CARES Act for Disaster Relief. He is not providing money, he is attempting to reallocate it from places that actively need it.

 

States would need to provide 25% ($100) of the the Weekly

  • States do not have this money.

  • In fact, one of the MAJOR sticking points of the negotiations for relief legislation so far has been that Republican plans refuse to further fund states.  Now they’re reallocating their existing funds.

  • The states able to navigate this will be those that are already the most well funded. They may use up the funds before less funded states are able to even implement the program, widening inequality in the US.*

*Source: NELP

 

The order puts the responsibility on states

  • Governors must request the additional wage replacement, provide their 25%, and administer the delivery. 

  • “If they don’t, they don’t,” says Trump. "This is not a hardship... this gives [people] incentive to go back to work."

  • Individual states have to:

    • Agree to this independently

    • Be able to afford to do this

    • Figure out how to implement it

 

This isn't a real plan

  • The order says Unemployment benefits expire  December 6 or when funds run out, WHICHEVER HAPPENS FIRST.

  • The economy will not recover by December 6th and we will once again be in this same position.

  • BESIDES, THE AMOUNT OF MONEY HE SUGGESTS IS AVAILABLE WOULD RUN OUT IN ABOUT 5 WEEKS.

  • It would take at least those 5 weeks for most states to implement this order, assuming it has legal merit.

  • The National Employment Law Project believes it would take much longer and may not be possible for states to implement at all.

*Source: NELP

 

There is a minimum threshold

  • The order states that to be eligible for the $400, you have to be receiving at least $100 in UI or PUA. Many are receiving less than $100. 

  • Oklahoma’s average UI payout is $44. A minimum threshold is an aggressive attack on those already struggling.

  • This order furthers the inequality that already exists in UI. There were already considerable problems with people being excluded from PUA. This excludes more people without solving existing problems.

 

This is political theatre at best

  • Mnuchin and Meadows would not compromise on a relief bill this week. They threatened executive orders. Now Trump is bypassing Congress.

  • This is not the move of compassion they are trying to sell it as. It is the move of a Dictator. And an unsupported one at that.

  • A real President who wanted relief for the people would have encouraged Mnuchin and Meadows to negotiate in good faith and not been golfing in NJ.

 

This order ignores most of the needs in this crisis

  • Remember, this is pandemic response legislation, not JUST unemployment relief.

  • THE PEOPLE NEED

    • The full $600 until the pandemic is over 

    • Extended and expanded PUA

    • Healthcare and rent relief

    • Hazard pay/protections 

    • Funding for state agencies to pay out backlogged claims

  • The only acceptable answer is for negotiations to continue in good faith and a relief bill to be agreed on and passed into law by the entire federal government.

 

What can we do?

  • Demand Senators get back to DC and pass a real relief bill. Immediately. Our lives are on the line and we are watching.

  • Contact Trump and make sure he knows we are not falling for this. Tell him to send Mnuchin and Meadows back into negotiations and make a deal with Congress that is real relief for Americans.

  • We will keep you updated on Action Steps on this site.

KEEP UP WITH THE LWA AS IT PROGRESSES ON OUR UPDATES PAGE HERE

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ExtendPUA.org is not a source of legal advice or counsel. All information contained on ExtendPUA.org is for educational purposes. ExtendPUA is a volunteer run organization. Where specific facts are referenced, every effort has been made to verify the accuracy and truthfulness of the information presented. Occasionally our information will become out of date because of the rapidly evolving nature of the movement. If you spot something out of place, please contact us at Info@ExtendPUA.org.