The orders Trump signed would provide an extra $400 in unemployment benefits, suspend some student loan payments and protect renters from eviction.
WochitDemocratic congressional leaders and White House officials said Sunday they are willing to continue negotiations to reach an agreement on a new coronavirus stimulus package to take the place of the executive orders President Donald Trump unveiled the previous day that aimed to address the economic hardships sparked by the coronavirus pandemic. “We have to reach an agreement,” House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said on “Fox News Sunday.” The California Democrat said Trump’s executive orders failed to accomplish the administration’s own stated goals and that the idea that they could “take the place of an agreement is just not so.” “We’ve got to meet halfway. We’ve got to do the best we can for the American people. But what they’re putting forth does not meet that standard,” she said. Senate Minority Leader Charles Schumer, D-N.Y., said on ABC News’ “This Week” that Trump’s executive orders are “unworkable, weak, and far too narrow.” He hopes “Republicans who hung their hat on these executive orders will now be forced” by the economy and the pandemic to “come to the table, accept our compromise to meet in the middle, and come up with an agreement.” Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said on “Fox News Sunday” that he is willing to continue negotiations with Pelosi and Schumer. “Any time they have a new proposal, I’m willing to listen,” Mnuchin said. ‘An administrative nightmare’: Trump’s executive action is a scramble for unemployment aid”The president has said, we can go back to the negotiating table,” White House economic adviser Larry Kudlow told ABC News. “We’ve not said no to that. We’ve been up there every day.” At a news conference from his golf resort in Bedminster, New Jersey, Trump signed four executive orders. One to provide an additional $400 per week in unemployment benefits, another that suspends some student loan payments through the end of the year, another that protect renters from being evicted from their homes, and one that allows employers to defer certain payroll taxes through the end of the year for Americans who earn less than $100,000. Pelosi and Schumer said there were many shortcomings to Trump’s orders. Among their strongest objections were the reduction in weekly federal unemployment benefits from $600 to $400 and language in the executive order that leaves the states responsible for paying for 25% of the benefit. They argued that states’ budgets are already strained because of the pandemic and that they don’t have the money to cover the 25%. And they said it could take weeks or months to get the assistance to Americans because of the way the order was structured. Mnuchin argued that states could use “the money we have already given them” to offset the costs, and he said the president might waive that requirement altogether. As for the time it would take to get the money to those who need it, Mnuchin said, “We have been told by the states they could get this up and running immediately.” What we know: Trump extends unemployment benefits through executive action but cuts aid to $400 per weekBoth sides indicated they were still far apart on several key issues in a potential new stimulus bill, however, including how much money should be allocated for state and local governments and food assistance. “How do you justify tens of billions of dollars to feed the hungry to $250,000,” Pelosi said of the difference between the Democratic and Republican bills. “You understand how far apart we are. just by that example.”When asked what Democrats would be willing to give up, Pelosi said one area that is negotiable is the length of time unemployment and other benefits would be available. Schumer and Pelosi both reiterated their willingness to reduce the price tag of the $3.4 trillion Heroes Act, which was passed in the Democratically-controlled House, by $1 trillion. But that proposal has already been rejected by the White House and Senate Republicans. White House trade adviser Peter Navarro said on NBC News’ “Meet the Press” that it was “unfortunate that these negotiations to date have failed” and that “it should be easier than it is” to reach a deal. “We’ve got two sides, you know, one’s at $1 trillion, another’s at $3 trillion. The first thing you have to do is agree on some number in between,” Navarro said. “And then what you do is you trade off, go back and forth across the table what you want, respecting each other’s red lines. You don’t make the Republicans pay for Planned Parenthood or pot farms, for example. This should be easy.” When host Chuck Todd pointed out the Democrats had been willing to meet halfway on a $2 trillion package, Navarro questioned “whether the Democrats really are sincere when they come to the table” and said he suspects “Democrats would prefer to see the economy go into the tank for another 90 days because that harms the president.” “It doesn’t help when Speaker Pelosi goes out after every day with her scarfs flying and just beats the heck out of us for being cruel people,” he said, saying Democrats had violated “the cardinal rule in negotiations,” which “is you don’t do them on TV.”Navarro said that if a deal is reached, Trump’s orders would be unnecessary. “If Congress solves the problem, there’s no need for the president to take executive action,” he said. “We’ll see what we get.” Though Pelosi quoted Sen. Ben Sasse, R-Neb., who called Trump’s executive orders “unconstitutional slop,” she declined to say if she would challenge Trump’s actions in court, calling it a “separate matter” from the stimulus negotiations. Similarly, when asked about the legality of Trump’s orders, Schumer said, “I will leave that up to the attorneys.”Mnuchin warned Democrats they “would have a lot of explaining to do” if they held up unemployment benefits through court challenges. He said each of Trump’s orders was cleared by the Office of Legal Counsel and that he was confident they would hold up in court. When asked why Trump was at his golf club in Bedminister, New Jersey, rather than taking the reins of the negotiations, Navarro said was Trump was “the hardest working president in history” and said the president could get things done outside of Washington. He said the failure to reach a deal lies with Congress, not the president. “The problem here is Capitol Hill, the swamp, two houses that are too far apart. I mean, the Lord and the Founding Fathers created executive orders because of partisan bickering and divided government,” he said. Contributing: David Jackson and Michael Collins AutoplayShow ThumbnailsShow CaptionsLast SlideNext SlideRead or Share this story: https://www.usatoday.com/story/news/politics/2020/08/09/trump-executive-orders-pelosi-mnuchin-covid-deal/3329981001/Find New & Used CarsNew CarsUsed CarsofPowered by Cars.com
Families struggle as heavy rain, more floods expected in Sudan
Thousands of people continue to live under the threat of incoming heavy rain and further flooding in parts of Sudan, months after floods ravaged nearly all of the country’s states. Since July, at least 115 people have been killed in the aftermath of days of torrential rains that brought record-breaking flash floods. The African nation through which…
Thousands of people continue to live under the threat of incoming heavy rain and further flooding in parts of Sudan, months after floods ravaged nearly all of the country’s states.
Since July, at least 115 people have been killed in the aftermath of days of torrential rains that brought record-breaking flash floods.
The African nation through which the Nile river flows is in the middle of its rainy season, which lasts from June to October.
The United Nations is scaling up emergency food assistance, and hundreds of thousands of people are living in desperate conditions in makeshift camps.
Hanan Shariff, a flood victim, has been living in a makeshift camp for the past 13 days in Sinjah, a town in the southwestern state of Sennar, after the floods submerged her village.
“We tried to build fences to protect our home but the winds were too strong, so we decided to salvage what we could and fled,” Shariff told Al Jazeera.
Sudan’s Sinnar state flooding: Families find shelter in schools
The rain and flooding exceeded records set in 1946 and 1988, forcing the government to declare a three-month state of emergency.
In recent days, the government has issued new warnings to communities living on the banks of the Nile that rains in the highlands of Ethiopia could lead to more flooding along the river, said Al Jazeera’s Mohammed Adow, reporting from Sinjah.
A total of 18 villages in Sennar state are “marooned by the floodwaters and cut off from the rest of the state,” Adow said.
Rowda Tayyib said people have “lost all hope”.
“The floods destroyed our homes and swept away our livestock and everything we owned. We have nothing left,” she told Al Jazeera.
A committee tasked with dealing with the ramifications of the floods warned two weeks ago that the country may face more rains, adding that the water level in the Blue Nile rose to a record 17.58 metres.
The floods have so far affected more than half a million people and caused the total and partial collapse of more than 100,000 homes in at least 16 Sudanese states.
Camps for the displaced are growing in number and size in the outskirts of Sinjah, according to Adow.
Mutwali Adam of the UN children’s fund (UNICEF) said people at the camp require “basic humanitarian needs like food, shelters and medicine”.
“Local communities provided some food, and also we complement each other as humanitarian actors here in the field,” Adam told Al Jazeera.
The dire humanitarian situation has been exacerbated by the country’s economic downfall and political deadlock. The government declared an economic state of emergency after its currency fell sharply in recent weeks.
The cost of food and transport have continued to soar across the country.
According to Adow, prices of some staple foods like bread and sugar have increased by 50 percent over the past few weeks, with many fearing the crisis will worsen.
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Ruth Bader Ginsburg Dead: Hillary Clinton, More Stars React
Honoring Her Honor. Tributes poured in from stars after Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg died on Friday, September 18, at age 87. The Supreme Court confirmed that the judge died at her home in Washington after complications from metastatic cancer of the pancreas. “Our nation has lost a justice of historic stature,” Chief Justice…
Honoring Her Honor. Tributes poured in from stars after Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg died on Friday, September 18, at age 87.
The Supreme Court confirmed that the judge died at her home in Washington after complications from metastatic cancer of the pancreas.
“Our nation has lost a justice of historic stature,” Chief Justice John Roberts said in a statement. “We at the Supreme Court have lost a cherished colleague. Today we mourn but with confidence that future generations will remember Ruth Bader Ginsburg as we knew her, a tireless and resolute champion of justice.”
Ginsburg was hospitalized for a potential infection in July. “She underwent an endoscopic procedure at Johns Hopkins this afternoon to clean out a bile duct stent that was placed last August,” spokeswoman Kathleen Arberg told CNN in a statement at the time.
The Brooklyn native previously suffered from acute cholecystitis, a benign gallbladder condition which she received treatment for in May. She was hospitalized in November 2018 after fracturing three ribs in a fall. She underwent surgery to remove two cancerous nodules the following month.
Ginsburg fought cancer four times, most recently in August 2019. She announced in January that she was cancer-free.
The judge became an icon for women’s rights as she served on the Supreme Court, to which she was appointed by President Bill Clinton in 1993. She was only the second female justice after Sandra Day O’Connor. Before serving on the country’s highest court, she studied at Cornell, graduated from Columbia Law School and became the first female tenured professor at Columbia.
Ginsburg made her mark on pop culture in recent years. Not only did Kate McKinnon spoof her on Saturday Night Live, but she was also the subject of the 2018 documentary RBG and the 2018 biopic On the Basis of Sex. Felicity Jones portrayed her in the movie and confessed she was “insanely nervous” to meet her.
“I felt like I wanted to curtsy,” the actress, 36, exclusively told Us Weekly in January 2019. “Ruth was incredibly welcoming. We went to her office first and it felt like a very warm environment — covered in photographs of friends and family and all sorts of mementos that had been sent to her by her fans.”
Scroll down to see tributes to Ginsburg.