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Trump to sign order extending COVID-19 aid

A protestor holds a flag reading 'Trump make America great again' during a demonstration against the coronavirus measures named

A protestor holds a flag reading 'Trump make America great again' during a demonstration against the coronavirus measures named "Call of the drums" in Stuttgart, Germany on Aug. 8, 2020.   | Photo Credit: AP

U.S. President Donald Trump said on Friday that he was poised to sign executive orders to extend aid to Americans facing hardship due to the COVID-19 pandemic, though negotiations continued between his administration and Democratic leaders in Congress on a new emergency spending bill. “End of the week,” Mr. Trump said on the possible timing of the orders.

But he also said his economic team “continues to work in good faith to reach an agreement with Democrats in Congress” on a relief package including unemployment benefits and protections against evictions.

Democratic House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said her party had agreed to lower the relief package size to $2 trillion from $3 trillion, but the White House continues to resist aid to State and local governments that economists say will be critical to avoiding a new round of lay-offs. Mr. Trump said his executive orders would defer payroll tax until at least the end of the year, defer student loan payments and extend an eviction moratorium. He also said he would extend enhanced unemployment benefits until the end of the year — a key source of contention between the White House and Democrats.

An additional $600 in weekly federal payments to the unemployed expired at the end of July, and Republicans want to slash the figure. Mr. Trump did not say how much the payments would be under his executive order.

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Printable version | Sep 27, 2020 1:35:01 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/international/trump-to-sign-order-extending-covid-19-aid/article32307296.ece

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