Kayleigh McEnany holds press briefing at White House | 8/10/20
Who through no fault of their own, needed relief. Politics, as usual, should find no place during this pandemic. But democrats, rejected, multiple, clean, bills to provide, relief. The american, people are tired of games, they seek leadership. And president trump delivered. This weekend president trump took executive, action designed to provide. The relief democrats, have denied to those who need it most. Through four executive, orders he took the following, step, steps, on the payroll tax he deferred, payments. Of the employee, portion, of certain payroll taxes, from september, 1st. Through the end of 2020. On unemployment, assistance, states will provide 25, percent cost sharing amounting, to a total of 400. Per week, and benefits, through the end of the year. And then, third, he extended, the eviction, uh protections. Um president trump will direct hud to prevent. Evictions, resulting, from financial, hardships. Caused, by the virus doing everything in his executive, capacity. To make sure those renting, and those homeowners, are protected. Finally, on student loans he extended, zero percent interest in suspended. Loan payments through the end of the year, the bottom line is that these actions will help americans, president, trump is for the american people and democrats, failed to deliver. Also, earlier, this year hundreds, of americans. Working. Men and women at the tennessee, valley authority the tva, were told that they would lose their jobs, to lower paid. Foreign, workers, imported from abroad. And then. Suffered the further indignity, of training, their foreign replacements. President trump boldly and resolutely. Intervened, in defense of these hard-working, americans. Rallying, to their case rushing to their aid and taking action to restore. Their jobs. He invited laid off workers and their representatives. To the white house and then he fired the chairman of the board of the tva, and one other board member. President trump offered an ultimatum. The firings, would continue, until the cruel and heartless, decision to fire, the hard working americans, was reversed. Tva, did reverse. Layoffs, have been canceled, and tech workers have been rehired. In the words of gay henson, president, of the engineering, associates. Ifpte. Local. 1937. The labor union representing, the 20 of the 2200. Highly skilled professionals, employed by the tva. In ms henson's words the president's, personal intervention, saved these jobs restored, the workers to their rightful, place. And set tva, on the path to returning to its mission of service to both the workers. At the tva, and to the people of this country. And with that i'll take questions. Yes, haley thank you starting, right there with the president's, actions, over the weekend. How quickly. Can americans, expect, to see, that extra, 400. Of unemployment, insurance. So we hope to see it quickly. And, close to immediately i don't have an exact readout for you on time but a lot of this will depend on states. And them applying, because as you know it's 75, percent federal government. Um covering, and 25. The states and they can use cares funding or even existing unemployment. Funds, for that 100. But it will require an application, process and given that part of it is up to the states in the application, process, is it possible, that there will be a delay in that some individuals, won't see this relief at all we will be working, around the clock to make sure there's not a delay. But any delay that does exist it's important, to note, where that delay and the responsibility. Residence, with nancy pelosi and chuck schumer who they were offered a clean extension, not of 400. Of unemployment. Uh benefits, but 600. And it was roundly rejected, by democrats, so this president, stood up for the american, worker at a time when democrats, refused to do so just to be very clear, you're saying that you're going to work around the clock you want it to get to americans, quickly, are we talking, weeks are we talking a month can you pinpoint, the timeline. I can't pinpoint a timeline other than we'll be working around the clock, and we encourage democrats, on the hill, uh to come back, secretary, mnuchin, has said he's willing to review, any proposal, because, the american people deserve better than the games, and the partisanship, they've seen from nancy pelosi chuck schumer and their democrat. Colleagues. Thanks kaley, two questions. Just to follow up on what kristen was asking is there a mechanism, by which the federal government, can provide the 300. Immediately, even if states. Don't provide the 100.. Well it's important, in fact required. By statute, that 25. Of that money. Be provided, by states and the 75. Is what we can do from the federal government side i would note, states can look to. Cares act funding.
As A way to bring that hundred dollars forward, they can also look to the general, fund, but we will be pursuing, every creative way possible, to make sure, that the preeminent, priority, prevails and that is making sure that this money gets to america's workers, and the, the orders of the president, sign that doesn't address funding for small businesses. Or for schools or stimulus, checks, does he still want legislation. To address all of those things, and is he willing to negotiate with democrats, he absolutely, would love to see both of those things school funding, is very important. And he's been for, second round of direct payments, um so we encourage democrats, to really negotiate, with us in good faith so far they have not done so. In fact moving further away from us rather than towards us negotiations, work by coming towards one another, i mean it's incumbent upon democrats, to do that they say they've come down from three, trillion to two trillion, is the white house willing to go up from one to something else, they've still put in several non-starters. They've never put forward a serious proposal, in the notion, um before, they claim to have come down they actually went up and then they wanted a hundred billion in school funding we said okay we'll give you more than you ask for 105, billion. To which was no longer acceptable, so they've been fundamentally, unserious, with each and every one of their uh. Their offers in this negotiation. Yes, thank you. A number of democrats, but also republican, senator ben sasse has suggested, these executive, actions are unconstitutional. Can you. Walk us through. What the white house is using as a legal rationale, for the president of stepping, in here, and would you be able to share the legal opinions. Yes um i absolutely, can do that, first i would note that what we, are doing is entirely, within the executive, capacity. Of the president. On student, loans, section, 2a. 2, subsection, a of the higher education, relief, opportunities, for student acts of 2003. Which is 20, usc. 1098. Bb. Authorizes, the secretary, to waive or modify, provisions, of student financial, assistance, programs, to, ensure that individuals, who've been affected by the national, emergency, are not worse off financially, there's another, statute, for that one section 432. Of the higher education, act of 1965. Which gives broad authority, to the secretary. On unemployment. The stafford, act 42, usc. 5174. Says the president, after a state applies, for it, can provide assistance, to people who have been adversely, affected, by, by a major disaster. Uh these are often known as other needs assistance, or ona. On payroll, tax authority, 26. Usc. 7508a. Plainly, authorizes, the treasury secretary. To provide any taxpayer, that has been affected by federally declared disaster with an extension of up to a year this was used before. When the secretary, extended the individual, filing deadline. For 2019, taxes from april to july, and finally. For evictions. The authority. Would be. Suggesting, that hhs. In a hud, consider whatever legal authorities, they have to protect americans.
And Also. The president merely instructed, and that, eo. Uh that we should do everything within the lawful capacity of the executive branch to protect americans, from evictions. Yes. On china. Is the administration, planning to respond, to the new sanctions, that china announced this morning on several lawmakers, and other people in the united states. So i won't get ahead of the president. Um on any actions. But we are certainly aware of the announced sanctions. And instead of taking meaningful, actions such as immediately, repealing, the national security, law, and stopping the system, the systematic, repression, of uyghurs, the chinese communist, party opted to respond with the symbolic. And ineffectual. Action. And a growing number of nations around the globe are demanding, real action, from beijing. The ball is in the chinese communist, party's, court um this president, has stood strongly, against china and he'll continue to do so is there any discussion kaylee are you listing, chinese companies on the u.s stock exchange, again i won't um get ahead of the president on any official announcements, thank you the president said over the weekend that he had heard from democrats, about, uh wanting to restart these negotiations. Who exactly did he hear from and then also his tweet this morning uh regarding, he said that he had uh, he said that leader uh schumer and speaker pelosi had his number, and regarding, regarding, negotiations. Does that mean he is going to, play a larger role in this process going forward or is it still going to be secretary, mnuchin and the chief of staff, well they speak on the president's, behalf, he's been actively, engaged in the negotiations. And working closely, with secretary, mnuchin, and the chief of staff. Democrats. Should come to the table on their immediate statement. In the aftermath. Of the president issuing these eos. Says that they would like to meet halfway, but you know those are empty words from democrats, that they'd like to meet halfway because so far they've just gone in the other direction. Did anybody reach out to him i'm not going to go through the president's, call logs but you guys can ask him later today if you'd like he'll have a press briefing at about 5 30., jeff. Thank you kaley, secretary, pompeo, has raised the issue of, russia and bounties, on u.s soldiers in afghanistan. With his counterpart. Does that mean that the administration, now considers, the intelligence, on this.
Secure. Or, clear, and if so, does the president plan to raise it with president putin. Yeah so on, the part about secretary, pompeo, i'd refer you to the state department that was a new york times story so, in terms of his personal con conversations. I would refer you there, um but on the part of the president, he this was, unverified. Um, not, conclusory, as the new york times. Initially, reported. Um the president will always act in the interests of our troops and look no further than the killing of solemani, and al-baghdadi. Which brought vindication, to hundreds of u.s service men and women who lost their lives overseas, just to be clear does that mean that, you did that pompeo, did not raise this does that mean that i would refer you to the state department, but are the two sides seeing this administrating. That intelligence, is different here, and the state department, again you're asking me to verify reporting, that would be in the realm of the state department, but, rest assured this president will always act in the best interests of our troops. Yes thanks kailey. Uh, back on the executive, orders the president signed this weekend. As a candidate, donald trump criticized. Fairly sharply, uh barack obama's, use of executive, orders and faulting him for, failing to reach deals with members of congress. How were the president's actions this weekend, any different from. President, obama's. They're a lot different when you consider, the fact that president barack obama. Uh, utilized, executive, order uh to push forward a policy. Um, that he denied he had the right to push forward, 23, times on dapa and on daca he said at least 23, times i don't have the power to do this, and then he went on to do just that i've already listed out and enumerated. The various legal authorities on the part of the president, and in terms of deal-making. I would note that, the cares act was landmark, legislation. You know at the heat at really the height of this pandemic. That brought relief to the american people and that was negotiated. Within, one week from first drafting, to enactment. And by comparison, if we want to go back to president obama, the american recovery, act during the great recession. Took roughly, three months from inception. To enactment, as law under single party control, uh this president managed to push the cares act, through divided, government, a very big accomplishment, on the part of the president. Yes kelly, the. Deal that the president, announced, late last month. With kodak, to make. New drugs. In the united states. Is apparently, on hold now amid. Allegations. Of insider, trading, is the president concerned. That, his. Infrastructure, here is being misused. That the defense protection. Act, uh, funds, are are potentially, being. Uh misused, would he pull the plug, on, the kodak, deal, and what does it say about the safeguards, that you have in place. That this potentially. Could have. Resulted in insider trading, so first the president will always act in the best interest of the american, people um, as you noted as soon as we became aware of these allegations. The international, development, finance corporation. Said that the recent allegations, of wrongdoing, raise serious concerns. We will not proceed any further unless these allegations, are cleared. The president has strong faith in the process here we've used the dpa, more than 30 times. To increase production. And it's been to great effect when you consider in the stockpile, we've seen, vast increases, tripling the amount of n95s. Tripling the number of gowns, four times, the number of ventilators, on hand. At 69, 000 and we'll have more than, 10 000 ten thousand more uh by the fall so this president, has used the dpa, effectively, but we're certainly aware of the kodak, allegations, and take them seriously would he pull the plugs on that deal i'll leave that to the president but he takes these very seriously, we won't speculate, as to what that investigation, finds thank you oh two questions for me, um the president just tweeted that gettysburg, would be one of the two sites he's looking at, what can you characterize, the message that he'd want to be sending with, that choice if it was that choice. Yeah i won't get ahead of the president as to what his convention speech will look like, but the president has done, a lot, to bring this country. Together. We've faced unprecedented. Challenges, and. He's worked to make sure that the american people, are are best equipped and taken care of to rise above the challenges that we face and he has a strong record, of achievement that he'll be touting on that day. Sorry there'd be another question. Uh is there a message to the protesters, in belarus, is is president looking at that is he, supporting, them, yes so um we are looking at that and we're deeply concerned, by the belarus.
Presidential, Election. Severe restrictions, on ballot access for candidates, prohibition, of local independent, observers, at polling stations. Intimidation, of opposition, candidates, in the detention, of peaceful, protesters. And journalists, have marred, the process, and we urge the belarusian. Government to respect, the right of peace, to peaceably. Assemble, and to refrain. From use of force. Yes, thanks kaley um, is the president, willing to. Uh provide, some aid for states and local governments giving that, given that the administration's. Asking states to pay. For a quarter of the national guard assistance, and now a quarter of the unemployment, benefits, yeah the president's, always been clear here that you know he, wants to support state and local governments, but only, for covet related matters, and he doesn't want to bail out blue states that had structural, problems long before this so that's where his priorities, lie. Yes. I have two questions one from somebody who can't be here today but first of all the president also just tweeted. Student athletes have been working too hard for their season to be cancelled, so does he, disagree. With college's counseling sports and and how would he guarantee their safety, if games did go ahead, yes i spoke to the president of the oval office about that just before walking out here and he is. Very much would like to see, college. Football. Safely. Resume. Their sport, and as he mentioned in that tweet, a lot of these college athletes you know work their whole lives to get, you know four years, and sometimes, they're redshirted, an extra year if they're lucky, they work their whole lives for this moment and he'd like to see them have a chance to live out their dreams. I had a question from um anthony leake of the chronicle, fashion guide, do you have any reaction, to the resignation. Of the prime minister and cabinet, in lebanon. Yeah the president's aware of the situation, but that was just breaking as i came out so i have nothing to add to that, other than our heart is with the people and those who lost their lives, christian, thanks kaylee two on the orders, um, is the administration, at, all concerned, that. Funding the federal government's, cost share through fema. Could leave, the government. Underfunded. For hurricane, season. Um. And then secondly on the housing provisions. I'm just curious why did the president. Extend, the eviction moratorium. As it was outlining, cares is that because it was deemed. Unconstitutional. So on evictions. Um. So on evictions, i would note that the president took, four. Strong actions here and again, the eviction moratorium. Um created. There was a temporary, moratorium. Put in place by the cares act so the president. Did what he can within his executive, capacity, and it was four part taking all lawful, measures. To prevent residential, evictions. Number two instructing hhs, and cdc. Uh to measure, to take measures to temporarily, prohibit, residential, evictions. On hud prioritizing. Federal fundings, that can be used, as financial, assistance, to struggling, renters and homeowners. And also hud working with its grantees, and partners, um to ensure that homeowners, are not forced out, and with regard to hhs. As they explore. Their, executive, authority, here. 42, usc, 264. A author, authorizes, the surgeon general in consultation, with the secretary. To make and enforce such regulations. As is in his judgment, that are necessary, to prevent the introduction. Transmission, or spread of communica. Communicable, diseases so it will be within hhs, hhhs's, purview to determine, whether, covid meets those standards and it could go a long way in helping americans.
Who Face eviction, and your second question, it was about fema, is there a concern, that you know pulling, from the disaster, funds could leave them under prepared, for the rest of well the really the worst part of hurricane season coming, yeah so there is that snap back, provision, that if um, fema does get below a certain level that that money will snap back so that is certainly a concern and we'll make sure. That two things happen that americans, get paid but also that there's enough funding there to safely go through hurricane, season. Thank you thank you very much two questions. What do you like the white house would like to see happening, in lebanon, right now next. And this weekend the u.s reached, five million. Uh coronavirus. Cases in brazil, one hundred, thousand, deaths. As healthcare, expects, compares. The response, from, both uh government. What went wrong, here and there. Um so first with lebanon, that was your first question, you know we're monitoring, the situation, closely, as i've said our heart goes out to the men and women who lost their lives, it's an absolute tragedy. Um and the president participated, in a virtual, conference with international, leaders, to work closely in our international, response, effort. We are delivering, aid to the region and our deepest. Condolences, go out to the victims. With regard to the us response to the coronavirus, we've done more testing, than any country in the world. And we do identify, more cases, we do have after all the most testing as the president has noted. When you look at the us response, the therapeutics. The beginning of this there was no coronavirus. Test it was a novel virus but we, immediately, worked to get more than 100 emergency, use authorizations, to identify. Uh various types of testing, on therapeutics. There was no, therapeutic, that we knew to work with cove but it was a novel virus but again this president worked and there are more than 210. Clinical trials on therapeutics. And we have dexamethasone. And convalescent, plasma. Rem desevere, and others and the vaccine, to be on pace to be. Completed, by the end of the year when ebola, it took four years to go to completion. This president. Is securing a vaccine at the fastest rate ever for a novel pathogen, so this president, has a really historic, coronavirus, relief response that we're happy to talk about the comparison. Between brazilian, daylight. Um so, going back to his question on hhs. And, executive, order is there no real solution, then for people who may be facing eviction. By the end of this month or early september. Well there is a solution i've mentioned the four things that we've done, and will continue, to do, but the real solution. The holistic, solution, rests with congress, and nancy pelosi, and chuck schumer coming to the table, uh this president.
Instructed, His administration, to find every single way possible. That without, congressional, democrats, who have been unrelenting. And, lacking in any sort of care or empathy for the american people at least when it comes to their negotiating, tactics. If they're not going to act and care for the american people he would so, he instructed, this administration. To pursue every legal avenue available to us without chuck and nancy. Um and he's done just that. Thanks haley, uh, just. So that with the president. Bypassing. Democrat, stalling. At the stimulus, bill as we've been discussing, this room. Um, how pressing, is it to actually have a next phase bill because it seems that the executive, order and the three memoranda, that he just signed. Really was kind of a wish list, of items he wanted to pass so how, motivated, is the white house. To push for a next-based, stimulus, bill in spite of what minutia, said this point yeah the white house is still motivated, you know the president would love to see the direct payments to americans, the president would love to see, the school funding there are several items that we'd like to see happen. The more relief for the american people, and those in need in particular, the better. But this president, you know has taken action, to alleviate, alleviate, some of that burden, uh but make no mistake, um there's still much more that we'd like to accomplish, but that includes. Having willing negotiating. Partners, in congress, and so far we have none on the in the democrat, party it seems. And then finally, one thing i want to leave you guys with is that 18, days ago. Mayor ted wheeler, tweeted, what i saw last night in portland. Was powerful, in many ways i listened, heard and stood with protesters. And i saw what it means when the federal government. Unleashes, paramilitary. Forces, against its own people. He in fact called our federal, agents, paramilitary.
Forces. And around this same time our federal officers, were facing, rioters, barricading. Officers, inside the courthouse, trapping, officers, inside. Launching of commercial, grade fireworks, a federal agent's hand was impaled by planted, nails, three officers, were likely. Were at least temporarily. I should say. Blinded, when a laser, was put in their eyes this has been an ongoing tactic, by the rioters. That was 18 days ago when mayor wheeler. Stood with the rioters. And against the quote paramilitary. Forces. But just four days ago it appears, mayor wheeler, had a change of heart. As. Local, officers, took over the situation, in portland, and he now, i, guess, this is what he believes now quote when you commit. Arson with an accelerant, in an attempt to burn down a building that is occupied. Occupied, by people, who you have intentionally. Trapped inside you are not demonstrating. You are attempting, to commit, murder. He could not be more right about that it is a drastic, change it took him 73. Days i i suppose to come up with that realization. And what we're seeing in portland, with six nights in a row, riots, being declared. On wednesday. You had, some of these rioters, shining lasers and officers, eyes disabled. Security, cameras broke windows use boards to barricade, the doors and start a fire with 20 sworn. Officers. And civilian, employees, inside. This is unacceptable. And it, is encouraging, to see that the liberal mayor of portland, finally seems to realize that thank you. Everyone. Oh.