‘Pathetic’: Trump Says No to Additional Covid-19 Stimulus Checks, Backs Cutting Tax That Funds Social Security Instead

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President Donald Trump on Tuesday expressed opposition to providing additional direct relief payments on top of the $1,200 checks that are slowly trickling out to eligible U.S. households, saying he would instead prefer to slash the tax that funds Social Security and Medicare.

“Well, I like the idea of payroll tax cuts,” Trump said at a press conference when asked about the idea of authorizing another round of direct payments in the next coronavirus stimulus package as mass layoffs continue.

“I’ve liked that from the beginning,” the president said. “That was a thing that I really would love to see happen. A lot of economists would agree with me. A lot of people agree with me. And I think frankly it’s simple, it’s not the big distribution, and it would really be an incentive for people to come back to work and for employers to hire.”

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Trump has floated the idea of a payroll tax cut several times in recent weeks—suggesting at one point earlier this month that the cut should be permanent—even though the move would not provide any relief for the tens of millions of people who have lost their jobs since mid-March.

“Economists don’t actually agree with him,” said Justin Wolfers, economics professor at the University of Michigan. “Payroll tax cuts are too slow and poorly targeted.”

But a payroll tax cut would advance a longstanding objective of the conservative movement by striking a blow to Social Security and Medicare funding, advocacy groups pointed out. The CARES Act, which Trump signed into law last month, contained a little-noticed provision allowing employers to delay payment of the payroll tax for at least the rest of 2020.

“Unlike additional stimulus checks, cutting payroll taxes does nothing to help seniors or the millions of people who just lost their jobs,” tweeted Social Security Works. “It does, however, defund Social Security and Medicare—which is why Trump is obsessed with the idea.”

The president’s opposition to additional direct payments comes as progressive lawmakers and activists are pushing for $2,000 monthly payments to all U.S. households for the duration of the Covid-19 crisis because the initial $1,200—for those lucky enough to have received it—was far from sufficient to cover basic expenses.

“Pathetic,” Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) said in response to Trump’s remarks. “A payroll tax cut does nothing for the 26 million who lost their jobs. With rent due on May 1, we need to provide $2,000 a month to everyone until this crisis is over. If we can bail out corporations, we can make sure everyone has enough to pay for basic necessities.”

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13 Comments on "‘Pathetic’: Trump Says No to Additional Covid-19 Stimulus Checks, Backs Cutting Tax That Funds Social Security Instead"

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Rose
Guest
Rose

Trump is disgusting. He expects the elderly and disabled to find work. Employers aren’t going to hire elderly people. I speak from experience.

Nps
Guest

I worked to earn my SS credits but because I had a pension from employment as an educator, I have to forfeit part of my SS credits. WTF time to file suit against the Fed in retaliation RIGHT?

William J Stefens
Guest
William J Stefens
Disgusting money grubbing scum. When will all Americans wake up to the fact that if you are not above middle class, Trump and his Trumpublicans Syncophants don’t care if you starve if it helps keep their rich corporate cronies happy and sending them huge campaign donations. Seniors. Trump wants to gut social security and keep you from getting your checks you have paid into from all the years you have worked. The very money that will help you eat and get critical life saving medicine. Trump does not care if you live or die as long as it makes him… Read more »
Paula Lowry
Guest
Paula Lowry
What does Trump want to see all old and disabled Americans living on the streets homeless. Why is it always let’s cut social security and Medicare benefits with this guy. I worked for 30years before I hurt my back. I made good money and I don’t qualify for any extra programs. I have to pay for everything out of my disability benefits, including two mortgages and Medicare and all my own prescriptions. It’s the people who didn’t work and make any money who get the Medicaid and their Medicine is free and they get food stamps. This is what is… Read more »
John Lentini
Guest
John Lentini

Cutting the payroll tax won’t do even a tiny little bit of good for those who have no paycheck. But it will make SS look more like a drain on the economy, which it is surely not.

Lou
Guest

This pathetic person, thinks he can say anything
About nothing. So far he has made statements, out madness and than says he is only joking. Maybe his base loves that and laughs, but intelligent individuals can only think he is mad.
I know he has late stage DEMENTIA and can’t remember anything he said yesterday. That’s what we should inact amendment 25, to save grace through the world, and to help him get treatments needed.

Lone Wolf
Guest
Lone Wolf

25th Amendment time is long overdue, but he’s a billionaire…let him pay for his own treatment. I wouldn’t help him if he was choking on a cold hamberder.

Gipper
Guest
Gipper

The most disgusting human being in the USA. Din the Con in prison orange would be great.

Markm Mitchell
Guest
Markm Mitchell

This Republican Administration is beyond contempt.

Nobsartist
Guest
Nobsartist
Little mentally ill donny is going to have to get used to the fact that people really don’t care what the laughingstock cares for. I see the payroll tax for ss and medicare being extended to every dollar of any type of income made. All of the money made on investments will be subjected to the tax just as every dollar made by a Macdonalds worker is. That’s the definition of fair taxation, something all republiCLOWNS hate. Why is this tax evader allowed to have input on taxation to begin with? He is going to prison and tax evasion will… Read more »
Gretta Falank
Guest
Gretta Falank

Just said taking the pay roll tax from people like me who are unemployed is a brilliant idea from our Stable genius and who is going to
Hire us with businesses shut down We are not stupid the payroll taxes
Pay for Social Security and Medicare he wants to get rid of them
social Security and Medicare are not entitlements I have been paying
For them since I was 15 Quit paying off your billionaire buddies and
Give us the $1200 and don’t send me a letter with your name on it I
Burned that shit

John Johnson
Guest
John Johnson

I’m just soooo tired of Trump’s Bullshit he is such a Dick. I really hope he gets the Virus and……. This will probably get scrubbed (moderated) but i had to speak my mind!

Dick Panico
Guest
Dick Panico
Social security, we workers paid for it all our working lives. Now Trump wants it to give to his rich cohorts, who already have more money than they can ever spend . We were warned about this guy when he ran his Bullshit campaign. But his so called base , didn’t believe it! A great number of them are on social security ,and they will see what a (serpent they nursed) to their bosoms ! By all means ,vote for this “deranged infant “ again , and see where that leads us! He’s the biggest (CRYBABY EVER IN THE )… Read more »