House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) on Sunday tore into President Donald Trump’s decision to sidestep Congress and take executive action on coronavirus relief, calling the measures “absurdly unconstitutional.”
But she stopped short of saying whether Democrats would mount legal challenges to the measures ― one executive order and three memorandums ― signed by Trump on Saturday.
“Well, the fact is, is that whether they’re legal or not takes time to figure out,” Pelosi told CNN’s “State of the Union” when asked if she would sue to stop the executive actions.
She added: “Right now we want to address the needs of the American people. As my constitutional advisers tell me, they’re absurdly unconstitutional.”
Pelosi said she hopes stimulus talks will resume in Congress.
Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) on Sunday also blasted Trump’s executive actions but refrained from weighing in on their legal viability.
“I’ll leave that up to the attorneys,” Schumer told ABC News’ “This Week.”
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi on Trump's executive actions: "Something's wrong. Either the President doesn't know what he's talking about. ... Or something's very wrong here about meeting the needs of the American people at this time" #CNNSOTUpic.twitter.com/Id401eeMdc— CNN Politics (@CNNPolitics) August 9, 2020
Trump announced the executive actions Saturday as negotiations stalled between congressional Republicans and Democrats on the latest coronavirus stimulus package. The president’s measures focused on extending moratoriums on student loan payments and evictions, suspending the collection of payroll taxes and rolling out additional unemployment aid.
But Democratic leadership criticized the measures as “weak” and “unworkable,” noting that the actions didn’t actually extend the federal eviction moratorium passed in the CARES Act in March.
Trump said that his administration would provide $400 weekly in enhanced...