Republican Executive Orders Create Confusion as Georgians Go Without Federal Unemployment Boost

August 11, 2020

Georgia officials “tight-lipped” about whether state can or will proceed with Trump’s order, which already slashes federal unemployment aid 

ATLANTA — After President Donald Trump announced his executive order reducing emergency expanded unemployment benefits while leaving “states on [the] hook for billions” to the praises of both Senator Kelly Loeffler and Congressman Doug Collins (who’ve each opposed expanded relief), Georgia officials remain “tight-lipped” about whether they’ll be able to fulfill the order at all — or leave Georgians without expanded unemployment insurance.

So far, Governor* Brian Kemp has given “no hint as to whether Georgia would – or could – pony up the money” — especially after calls from Republican House Speaker David Ralston for federal aid to the states were roundly ignored by Georgia’s Republican Senators who let expanded unemployment relief lapse in the first place. 

The result? Given that Trump’s order “requires a state to commit” funding, Georgians could continue to lose out on expanded unemployment relief in the middle of a recession that’s left hundreds of thousands of Georgians without a job.

“After Republicans created a crisis by refusing to extend emergency unemployment relief in the first place, out-of-work Georgians are now set to continue going without expanded unemployment benefits in a recession,” said Alex Floyd, spokesman for the Democratic Party of Georgia. “Senator Kelly Loeffler and Congressman Doug Collins should be working to fix this crisis, but instead they’re too busy scoring points with the White House to fight for struggling Georgia families.”

Read more about Georgia officials’ “tight-lipped” response on Trump’s orders:

AJC: No details on how state would handle Trump’s order on jobless benefits

  • An executive order signed by President Donald Trump would extend enhanced benefits payments for the unemployed, if states provide a portion of the funds. But Georgia officials were tight-lipped Monday about how that will play out here.
  • Trump’s order would give an extra $400 a week, but require a state to provide $100 of that.
  • [Kemp] he gave no hint as to whether Georgia would – or could – pony up the money. He also did not say if the state would, under Trump’s Sunday modification, request that the federal government pick up the tab.
  • Some Georgia officials questioned whether the state, already in the midst of a budget crunch, had the money to make it work.
  • Butler, whose agency administers both the federal payments and state jobless benefits, had previously criticized Congress for putting the burden on the states to create the systems that will pay the enhanced jobless benefits.


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