For days, US President Trump refused to sign the new Corona aid package. Now he has given up his blockade attitude – just in time to avert a shutdown of the federal authorities.
After days of hesitation, US President Donald Trump signed a corona aid package decided by Congress with a bipartisan majority. A Trump spokesman said on Twitter.
$ 900 billion against the crisis
The package of measures has a volume of around 900 billion US dollars (around 740 billion euros). Trump initially threatened to veto the legislative package. He called the package a “shame” and asked for improvements. The outgoing US president justified his resistance mainly with the fact that the planned special payments in the form of checks to the citizens were too low.
For millions of Americans, an expiry of the previous corona aid would have been a threat to their very existence: For them, the unemployment benefit linked to it ended on Sunday at midnight. In addition, the lack of signature from Trump would have meant that tenants are no longer protected to the same extent from evictions and that help for badly battered companies is not released.
The aid package is also tied to a $ 1.4 trillion budget bill that is expected to finance the federal government’s operations through September. If the US president had continued to refuse to sign, a so-called shutdown of the federal authorities would have occurred on Tuesday.
Cross-party criticism of Trump
Trump’s relenting in the dispute over the legislative package followed urgent demands from the ranks of the Democrats, but also those of the Republicans. The two parties had decided on the Corona aid package after a hard-won compromise – including the budget bill linked to it. Last Monday, the package of measures was passed by the House of Representatives and the Senate.
Top politicians were outraged by Trump’s stance to block. “What the president is doing at the moment is incredibly cruel,” said Democratic Senator Bernie Sanders to ABC. “So many people are doing badly.” Republican Senator Pat Toomey also urged Trump to sign. After that, he could still ask for more help. Maryland Republican governor Larry Hogan expressed frustration with the president’s unpredictability. “I’ve given up on guessing what to do next,” said Hogan.
Trump’s elected successor Joe Biden had also urged the president to sign the draft. The incumbent is stealing from responsibility, so Biden’s allegation.
The new aid program complements the earlier measures against the economic and social consequences of the corona pandemic. Back in March, the US Congress launched a gigantic economic stimulus package – with a volume of 2.2 trillion dollars, it was the largest aid package in US history. The funds were then topped up in April with another aid program.