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Unemployment benefits expire for millions as Trump rages

Unemployment benefits expire for millions as Trump rages

Unemployment benefits for millions of Americans expired overnight as President Donald Trump refuses to sign an end-of-year COVID relief and spending bill that had been considered a done deal before his objections .

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“It’s a chess game and we are pawns,” said Lanetris Haines, a self-employed single mother of three in South Bend, Indiana, who stood to lose her US$129 weekly jobless benefit unless Trump signed the package into law or succeeded in his improbable quest for changes.

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Unemployment benefits expire for millions as Trump rages
Unemployment benefits expire for millions as Trump rages

Washington has been reeling since Trump turned on the deal, winning sweeping approval in both houses of Congress, and after the White House reassured Republican leaders that Trump would support it.

Unemployment benefits expire for millions as Trump rages

Instead, he attacked the bill’s plan to provide $ 600 for coronavirus relief to most Americans – and insisted it should be $ 2,000. Republicans in the House of Representatives quickly rejected the idea during a rare session on Christmas Eve. But Trump is unimpressed even though the nation is in the grip of the pandemic.

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Unemployment benefits expire for millions as Trump rages
Unemployment benefits expire for millions as Trump rages

“It’s the day after Christmas, and millions of families do not know whether they will be able to cover their expenses due to President Donald Trump’s refusal to sign the economic relief bill that Congress approved overwhelmingly bipartisan,” Biden said in a statement that he accused Trump of “waiver.” Of responsibility “with its” serious consequences. “

“I simply want to get our great people $2000, rather than the measly $600 that is now in the bill,” Trump tweeted Saturday from Palm Beach, Florida, where he is spending the holiday. “Also, stop the billions of dollars in ‘pork.’”

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Trump threatens to torpedo COVID relief with new demands
Unemployment benefits expire for millions as Trump rages

“I’ve been talking to people who are scared they’re going to be kicked out from their homes, during the Christmas holidays, and still might be if we don’t sign this bill,” said Rep. Debbie Dingell, a Michigan Democrat.

Lauren Bauer, a fellow in economic studies at the Brookings Institution, has calculated that 11 million people would lose aid from the programs immediately without additional relief; millions more would exhaust other unemployment benefits within weeks.

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