If this doesn’t make the case that the Republicans don’t give a flying rat’s ass about the unemployed and struggling people, what will?
Democrats failed on Thursday to win enough Republican votes to reauthorize long-term unemployment benefits for more than a million workers cut off in December.
At least five Republicans needed to vote for the bill in order for it to advance, but only four did. The bill failed 58-to-40.
“Because of the inaction of one person today there’s a family, thousands of families who are going to miss mortgage payments and send their lives into economic chaos,” said Sen. Cory Booker (D-N.J.).
Even if the Senate eventually passes an extension of unemployment benefits, which seems unlikely, Republican leaders in the House of Representatives have been unenthusiastic about holding a vote.
More than 1.7 million long-term jobless Americans have missed out on benefits since the federal Emergency Unemployment Compensation program lapsed on Dec. 28. Since 2008, the program had provided extra weeks of benefits to laid-off workers who use up the standard six months of state benefits.
Democrats tried to sweeten the deal by banning millionaires from receiving benefits. Thursday’s measure would have required unemployment claimants to certify they’d earned less than $1 million in the previous year; currently, there is no income restriction.
The bill’s cost would have been offset through “pension smoothing,” or allowing companies to make smaller contributions to employee pensions, thus earning higher profits and giving the government more tax revenue.
So what happened to all that claptrap about “compassionate conservatism” and that smug Christian preaching about helping their fellow man? They can’t even talk about “exploding the deficit” anymore, because it’s shrunk down to 50% of what it was under Bush.
No, this is the Romney/Trump side of the GOP, the “I got mine, screw you” and “If the poor want to make money, get a job,” and if they are too lazy to get off the couch, then tough.
If the DNC and every Democratic House and Senate candidate doesn’t wave this in the face of their pasty-faced bloated white plutocratic GOP incumbent, they deserve to lose.