BURLINGTON, VT- Negotiations in Washington are still underway regarding a second COVID Relief Package. This is happening as President Trump signed four orders on Saturday in response to the pandemic.
Over the weekend, President Trump signed an executive order and three presidential memoranda’s regarding things like unemployment, mortgage assistance, taxes, and student loan relief. Constitutional Law experts say these actions created a constitutional mess.
“The mess really is cause there’s a lot of questions as to whether or not the president has the constitutional authority to do the things that he did in these memoranda’s and order,” said Constitutional expert and Law Professor Jared Carter.
Jared Carter is an Assistant Professor of Law at Vermont Law School. He said the president could have done this as a negotiation tactic because congress could not decide on a COVID Relief Package.
“The president says this was to get something done when congress couldn’t. It could lead to bringing different representatives and senators to the table to negotiate,” said Carter.
Carter explained that under the constitution, congress has the power to spend federal money. By creating these latest memoranda’s and order, Carter said it questions the president’s authority to do certain things.
“That means when the president acts unilaterally to spend money to fund unemployment assistance, there’s a real question on whether he can constitutionally do that,” said Carter
Congressman Peter Welch said the house recently passed a $3 trillion relief package. He felt things were initially looking positive in congress, but now he is not so sure.
“Now we are at a point in Washington where that bipartisan consensus where we have do it big and we have to do it promptly is now eroding,” said Representative Welch.
Congressman Welch said he is working hard along with Senator Sanders and Senator Leahy to get federal aid to the state and the local communities.