The Detroit Post
Saturday, 04 December, 2021

Trump Unemployment

Maria Johnson
• Sunday, 08 November, 2020
• 7 min read

US President Donald Trump looks on during a ceremony presenting the Presidential Medal of Freedom to wrestler Dan Gable in the Oval Office of the White House in Washington, DC on December 7, 2020. Millions of Americans lost their unemployment benefits on Sunday as President Donald Trump refused to sign a $900 billion Covid-19 relief and government funding bill passed by both chambers of Congress.

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The unsigned bill provides aid for businesses and individuals struggling amid the pandemic and earmarks money for vaccine distribution and education. Trump's resistance to signing the bill leaves millions of Americans without unemployment coverage from two federal jobless programs and threatens a government shutdown when funding runs out on Tuesday at 12:01 a.m.

Andrew Settler, a senior fellow at the Century Foundation think tank, estimated up to 14 million people would collectively lose aid from the various programs that expired. “These are real families caught up in the maelstrom of the pandemic scouring for shelters to live in, postponing the purchase of lifesaving medicines, and going further and further into debt,” Settler wrote.

The president's continued refusal to sign the bill would lead to the expiration of eviction protections, living millions of renters vulnerable, as well as a delay in crucial subsidies for businesses. “It is the day after Christmas, and millions of families don't know if they'll be able to make ends meet because of President Donald Trump's refusal to sign an economic relief bill approved by Congress with an overwhelming and bipartisan majority,” Biden said in a statement.

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi has said that Democratic lawmakers will vote on Monday for a standalone bill to provide $2,000 direct payments to Americans. Millions of Americans lost their unemployment benefits on Sunday as President Donald Trump refused to sign a $900 billion Covid-19 relief and government funding bill passed by both chambers of Congress.

Demographics, for the most part, and to some extent loose monetary policy and fiscal stimulus. Let’s look at this chart, which shows historical data on unemployment over the past 11 years ending 2019.

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The narrative presented around this graph covers both the entire Obama presidency and the first three years of the Trump administration. America was facing a massive crisis because of widespread failures in the financial system and a collapse in home prices.

Recently, economist Paul Krugman argued that, in the distant past, most recessions were induced by the Fed to prevent the economy from overheating and to reduce inflation. The Fed would increase interest rates via various mechanisms in its arsenal to slow economic growth and even put the economy in a recession.

Once inflation was bought under control the Fed would loosen the purse strings to stimulate the economy. Rarely did Americans lose confidence because the Fed was in control, the financial system was functioning, few banks were failing and housing prices while stagnant or even declining, were not collapsing.

If you look at the chart, 2017-2019 is an extension of the same downward trend (momentum) in the unemployment rate that began in 2010. The Trump propaganda machine would like us to believe that he took a hopeless and hapless economy and swiftly turned it around.

The PUC and PUA benefit programs were slated to end on (or in many states, shortly before) December 31. The $600 weekly supplement benefit payment under PUC expired at the end of July.

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Although the President signed into law a lesser benefit called Lost Wage Assistance earlier this year, such benefits were only available for a limited time and there has otherwise been no replacement for the weekly supplemental payments. PUC : The bill extends PUC by providing for up to 24 weeks of additional unemployment benefits to eligible individuals who have exhausted the unemployment benefits available under state law.

Before the CARES Act, many states capped their benefits at 26 weeks. The CARES Act provided an additional 13 weeks of PUC benefits.

In addition to the revived programs, the bill authorized one-time payments of $600 to those qualifying persons. Individuals with adjusted gross income up to $75,000 in 2019 will receive the full $600 payment.

The $900 billion COVID-19 relief package signed on Dec. 27 by President Donald Trump included up to 11 more weeks of unemployment benefits (in the end it'll be more like 10), a one-month extension to the eviction moratorium and other provisions to help those struggling during the pandemic. Trump waited five days before signing the stimulus bill to release the checks, which delayed states in preparing their systems to restart benefits, which had already expired on Dec. 26.

Trump's gambit to raise the $600 maximum for the second stimulus check to $2,000 failed to be picked up for a vote in the Senate by Jan. 3, the same day the new Congress was sworn in. The result meant a longer wait for renewed federal unemployment benefits (on top of the state allowance) to kick in.

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States waited for guidance from the US Department of Labor on how funds will be allocated, but the agency told them on Dec. 28 that beneficiaries will continue to receive payments, according to a report from The Philadelphia Inquirer. California, Connecticut, Washington and Rhode Island notified benefits recipients of the $300 bonus checks being processed for the first week of January.

At this point, the new checks should start to arrive soon, though it depends on how long it'll take the states to begin processing payments. Though the language of the stimulus bill doesn't specify whether the unemployment bonus is retroactive, that doesn't appear to be the case, The Washington Post has reported.

Observers don't expect that we'll see a federally instituted lump sum payment to make up for previous weeks of not receiving a $300 check. Sarah Too/CNET With Mixed Earner Unemployment Compensation, a person who made more money from self-employment or a contracting job -- that requires a 1099 form -- could receive an extra $100 a week.

Mixed Earner Unemployment Compensation will now give that person an extra $100, but only if the state participates. When the CARES Act passed in March, it provided unemployed workers with a weekly bonus check of $600 on top of the amount the state was offering, but those payments ended in July.

The weekly benefit amount depends on an applicant's gross income when employed and ranges between $300 and $600, with some exceptions. 29 million Americans still on unemployment 05:58 Unemployed U.S. workers who are banking on an extra $300 in federal jobless aid will now receive up to six weeks of benefits, double the three weeks initially guaranteed by FEMA, the government agency overseeing the relief.

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Shortly after President Donald Trump signed an executive order last month authorizing the aid, FEMA said it was initially planning to provide three weeks of benefits. South Dakota declined to accept the funds, with its governor saying that most jobs lost during the pandemic have been recovered.

Overall, the Lost Wages Assistance (LA) program is “insufficient,” said Andrew Settler, senior fellow at The Century Foundation, a progressive think tank. “Indeed, LA is already starting to run out in the 17 states that have managed to get payments out the door, and the deadlock in Congress will mean workers will soon have to manage on underlying benefits that average less than $300 per week,” Settler said in an email.

September 10 is the final day for states and territories to apply for assistance, according to FEMA. U.S. economy added 1.4M jobs in August09:38 “Regardless of where the states and territories are in their process to receive and distribute the FEMA funding, FEMA will fund six weeks in $300 supplemental unemployment benefits to every state and territory that has applied for this assistance by September 10,” an agency spokesperson told CBS Monarch in an email.

Just over 857,000 workers applied for first-time unemployment aid in the week ending September 5, the Labor Department said Thursday. President Donald Trump on Saturday authorized an extra $400 in weekly unemployment insurance benefits, a potential financial lifeline for the nation's 16.3 million jobless workers.

States can't use their current unemployment systems for benefits authorized outside of Congress, Help notes. Don't expect to receive the extra jobless benefit this month, said Andrew Settler, senior fellow at The Century Foundation, a progressive think tank.

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Already, some unemployed workers are posting queries on social media about when they might get the extra aid, pointing to Mr. Trump's memo stating it will begin on August 1 for those who qualify. That's because many states are already financially strapped due to a loss of tax revenue after the coronavirus pandemic shuttered the economy.

They can “count their existing unemployment insurance (UI) weekly benefit payments from state funds” toward their $100 contribution, the memo said. In effect, workers in those states will receive only an extra $300 on top of their regular unemployment benefits, rather than the expected $400, he noted.

Jobless workers who receive less than $100 a week in unemployment pay aren't eligible for the additional $400 in aid authorized by Mr. Trump. The Trump Administration’s pro-growth agenda provides job creators with the framework they need to expand their businesses and offer more opportunities for workers.

Steady job growth in combination with sustained year-over-year wage increases are not only positive signs for the economy: They also improve workers’ quality of life and incentivize previously left-behind Americans to join the labor force. The lowest unemployment rates on record were matched or set in September 2019 for African Americans, Hispanics, and people with disabilities.

Considering the unprecedented length of the expansion and the low unemployment rate, continued job growth at this point demonstrates that today’s labor market is historically strong. In the third quarter of 2019, 73.7 percent of workers entering employment came from out of the labor force rather than from unemployment, the highest share since the series began in 1990 (figure 2).

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These companies pledged to create upwards of 14 million new job and training opportunities through education and deskilling initiatives for current and future employees over the next 5 years. With a 50-year low for the unemployment rate and consistent job gains, the September employment data make it clear that the American labor market remains historically strong.

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