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GOP Blocks One-Year Unemployment Extension, Wants Spending-Cut Offsets

November 30, 2010 - by Donny Shaw

On Tuesday afternoon, Democrats called on the Senate to pass the Unemployment Insurance Stabilization Act under the expedited unanimous consent procedure. As expected, Sen. Scott Brown [R, MA], acting on behalf of all Republicans, objected and will force a full-fledged debate on the issue that will likely last several weeks and be rolled together with unrelated tax issues. Federal unemployment benefits expire today for millions of long-term unemployed workers.

The bill Democrats tried to pass today would extend federal unemployment benefits until January 3, 2012. Because its costs (approx. $54 billion) are not offset, there was never much of a chance that the Republicans would allow the bill to go through so easily. Republicans have repeatedly said they want to pay for unemployment benefits with corresponding spending cuts (something that’s never been done) before they’ll vote for it, and because the Democrats don’t have a filibuster-proof majority they have a god deal of leverage for enforcing their position.

Immediately after objecting to unanimous consent, Sen. Brown turned the table and called for unanimous-consent passage of a one-year unemployment extension that is fully paid for by rescinding unspent non-security appropriations. Democrats objected.

The most likely scenario at this point is that the unemployment extension will be added to a bill to extend the expiring Bush tax cuts. Obama said today that unemployment benefits were mentioned in a bipartisan meeting on the tax cuts. Sen. Max Baucus [D, MT], who proposed the one-year extension bill that was rejected today, will lead the Democrats in the tax cut negotiations.

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Displaying 31-60 of 97 total comments.

poolplayer 12/01/2010 10:02am
in reply to Abaratarrr Nov 30, 2010 5:17pm

You must be one of the wealthy with a nice job.And as far as tax cuts and unemployment extension,they are going to be related now because the GOP refuses to pass anything unless they get their tax cuts.I think the wealthy should be taxed more in times of need.That would make up for unemployment extension.I’m not saying make it permanent,just in times of a weaker economy to help the country.But the GOP are bullies and really don’t care about the common folk.

poolplayer 12/01/2010 9:50am
in reply to Nodlee87 Nov 30, 2010 12:54pm

It’s not Congress,it’s the GOP!They are the ones that are blocking everything so they can pass their Bush tax cuts for the wealthy.Just remember that they won’t even budge on this matter.So maybe you shouldn’t vote for them anymore!!!

DGalanteNJ 12/01/2010 9:01am

On C-Span Sen. Stabenow attempted again to have a vote put forth for the extension, it was turned down… what? I say we all go to Sen Scott Browns house to live and eat, he said yesterday with a smug grin on his face “I like to eat” well so do we, but without a extension none of us will be able to, nor will we have a table to put any food on. Where do we go from here? I just can’t wrap my brain around the fact that our own country has turned its back on us, and look down on us like we are free loaders, but yet Congress is looking to give a tax break for the ultra rich. My last check paid for rent and some food and its running out soon, where do we go from here? God help us, where do we go from here?

Rationalview 12/01/2010 8:24am

Stella – what are you doing to help your husband? Two incomes are better than one especially if they are low paying jobs.

DeborahJBrown 12/01/2010 7:07am

Republicans in Congress do not care about unemployed workers and have absolutely no intention of helping Americans. They keep saying that we need to “do whatever it takes” to survive and all they care about is assuring tax cuts for billionaires. So, let’s DEMAND accountability and make them tell us how they intend to pay for millionaire/billionaire Bush tax “Christmas gifts” that Republican sociopaths (oops, I mean Senators) wish to bestow on their favorite sports figures, entertainers and other millionaires/billionaires and anyone else they may be brown-nosing.

DeborahJBrown 12/01/2010 7:00am
in reply to AnAmericaninPeril Dec 01, 2010 4:24am

I am a recent 99er,56-years old.I have been saying everything you said for a long time-no one is listening. It’s become blatantly obvious that Republicans in Congress have a single focus to assure tax breaks for millionaires/billionaires. Love for sports figures,entertainers, and even Paris Hilton! It’s gross, it’s disgusting, it’s vile, it’s un-American but it’s also clearly intentional. The American Dream has become an American Nightmare. We have a Republican Congress who worships false Gods-MONEY. They won’t “get it” until they are affected.They will wake up after there are no protective services when early parolees and desperate people begin to “do whatever it takes” to survive w/no deterrent for crime. Prisons will look like food and shelter and the bigger the crime the longer the “housing” Please, don’t anyone take me seriously I’m angry and venting. I’ve come to believe that hope is dying and Republicans in Congress are heartless sociopaths.

craines 12/01/2010 6:25am

I know that there are a lot of Republican Unemployed, I,m just wondering how many of the unemployed Democrates and independents as well as Repubilcans voted for this
Republican turn around in the House.

You had to know what would happen!


BenjaWiz 12/01/2010 6:16am
in reply to mcelyea8000 Dec 01, 2010 1:58am

great point made in this statement above.

BenjaWiz 12/01/2010 6:12am
in reply to TheDutchess Dec 01, 2010 5:33am

I never said I was Republican and I happen to be in total disagreement with BUSH Tax cuts for wealthy folks as they’ve got more then enough money, look there are social service programs out there for folks who need help. Why do folks want a check and run up more debt and then everyone has to pay more or even higher taxes in the end? this makes no sense we got into this mess from debt to pay for things like Wars, Tax Cuts For Wealthy Folks, That so called Bridged to no where project i.e. pork. This Republican-Democrat fighting over who did what isn’t going to fix our problems here at home but congress needs to balance a budget again not go back to more unwise spending.

Rationalview 12/01/2010 6:03am

Just one more thought for the day – in case you don’t realize it – most employers who pay minimum wage are not interested in hiring over qualified people BECAUSE they know that they are only going to stay for a while until they find something else. Believe it or not, even $8.50 an hour jobs require training and a company’s investment in the employee – something these employers are not willing to spend in these economic times. Trust me on this one – they really don’t care if you are a republican or a democrat – they just want to be sure that you will stick around.

Rationalview 12/01/2010 5:57am

There won’t be any riots – only people jamming to get on welfare roles – Congress is aware of the options – either way it affects government spending – why not allow the unemployed to have the insurance money that they already paid for and stop the game playing? Why would they wait until the very end of the month – they had months to rectify this knowing Nov 30th was approaching – again all game playing. Congressional reps will kiss your rear when running for office – just like a used car salesman when he wants to sell you a car – but where are they when the engine falls out?

TheDutchess 12/01/2010 5:46am
in reply to jlohman Dec 01, 2010 2:51am

jlohman, you should feel bad that you were hoodwinked and led astrayed by you own party of NO. Did you ever watch CNN, Keith Olberman or Rachel Maddow? Youu must have been living under a rock to not know that if the Republicans got majority in any house, that it would mean devastation. They couldn’t get anything done before and now, it’s going to be worse. Thanks for voting for them. Now you will see just how great the good ol party will treat the Americans that need help the most….

TheDutchess 12/01/2010 5:39am
in reply to stella87 Dec 01, 2010 4:14am

Stella, what do you say to someone who’s mortgage is $1486 per month and they only receive 1600 per month, have a kid in college & one in high school. That’s just the mortgage without even mentioning the other bills. What about the fact that the banks are not even working with you anymore and you are still behind in payments. Should that person give up the home even though they will walk away with nothing because they owe so much? Is that person supposed to go live in a shelter? What happens after that? The person still haven’t gotten any job offers, so what’s next?

TheDutchess 12/01/2010 5:33am
in reply to BenjaWiz Nov 30, 2010 8:35pm

Wow! So I guess you are completely for the Bush Tax cuts even though they are not paid for? I guess since all of us “poor folks” don’t deserve to eat or feed our children. You probably have a job but just on this site for no good reason but to waste time while at work doing nothing. I guess we all just deserve to be bums on the street right? They don’t even agree on the very basic and moral principles of protecting your own. How in the hell is the budget going to get balanced? More jobs have been created in Obama’s Administration in the last year than the last 8 years of the Bush era. There still aren’t enough jobs to go around. So while they debate, people are losing their homes and families can’t buy food. I guess that’s the American way according to you…

TheDutchess 12/01/2010 5:15am

There’s no time for being diplomatic. It’s high time that Obama and his office needs to shift gears and stop playing footsies with the party of NO. They don’t want to compromise. They don’t want to work together if it means they will have to bend on any of their beliefs.They would just as well say no to everything until they are fully in control in January. Then all of you unemployed people that voted for the Republicans and thought that things would be better, Lookout! You may get what you wanted! Hopefully, all the ones on this site voted for the Democrats. They are still, STILL, the only ones trying to get something done for us, NOT THE REPUBLICANS!

TheDutchess 12/01/2010 5:10am

Those Republicans don’t have a clue. Actually, I think they do but they don’t care. They know that economically, people that are unemployed need that money to buy the very basic of items. We go out and spend every dime because we have no choice. We have to eat, buy gas, pay for car insurance, etc. They are smokin something because they believe that unemployed people are saving that money. Isn’t that the stupidest thing? I have to applaud the Independant Bernie Sanders. It seems like he’s the only one to put his balls on the line and stand up for human decency, morality and economic sense. Where’s the democratic party in all this? It seems like everybody is holding their tongue in order to keep their jobs. We need Anthony Weiner in there gettin it started!!!

mcelyea8000 12/01/2010 4:33am

Dear Congressmen/women….
would any of you be willing to take me and my teenage daughter in when i lose everything i have worked so hard for in my life…
please contact me as soon as possible because soon i will be without a home and car and food..lost my medical coverage a long time ago.

AnAmericaninPeril 12/01/2010 4:24am
in reply to AnAmericaninPeril Dec 01, 2010 4:23am

A word on the 99ers…
These people had the very great misfortune to lose their jobs at the start of the recession. The job market has only worsened in that time. As unemployment benefits provide only a portion of one’s prior income, many 99ers have lost housing, transportation, health insurance, good credit standing, savings, retirement funds, etc. They are truly in desperate need of assistance. 99ers will most likely be the last to regain employment as at this time, many companies discriminate – only hiring those (i) currently employed or (ii) unemployed for 6 months or less. I’d love to see demographics on the 99ers. My guess…75% are age 40 and up. Any 99er out there would gladly trade positions with those more recently unemployed. That’s not do-able. Including them in the temporary continuation of Emergency Unemployment Compensation benefits certainly is.

AnAmericaninPeril 12/01/2010 4:23am
in reply to AnAmericaninPeril Dec 01, 2010 4:22am

Useful sites:

You can call your Senators toll-free at 1-866-606-1189

AnAmericaninPeril 12/01/2010 4:22am
in reply to AnAmericaninPeril Dec 01, 2010 4:22am

Op III: Rally Routine

Can’t make it to Washington D.C.? Then gather at your…City Hall, County Courthouse, State Capitol, public parks and fairgrounds. Every Saturday, Noon to 4PM. Bring signs and banners, friends and family. Be loud but remain lawful. Sing, chant, shout…be heard and be visible.

Op IV: Media Engagement

Contact local media with respect to Ops II and III. Apply pressure on local media to prioritize coverage of the unemployment crisis and its impact on the unemployed in your community and U.S. economy.

Op V: Recruitment

To the extent they are willing and able to offer support, request friends, family and (former) co-workers to take part in Ops I-IV. Strength in numbers. It’s critical that our elected officials hear from ALL those impacted by the unemployment crisis.

AnAmericaninPeril 12/01/2010 4:22am
in reply to AnAmericaninPeril Dec 01, 2010 4:21am

Opportunity I: Communication Overload

Email, telephone, fax, tweet, snail mail, online petitions

To – President Obama, your elected public servants in the U.S. Senate and House of Representatives, those in Congress who support our mission, those in Congress who oppose our mission. Make yourselves and your stories known – be visible.

Op II: Work Search Wednesdays

Go to your local Unemployment Office every Wednesday of every week until you are gainfully employed. Utilize the staff and services provided in support of your ongoing effort to find employment. Bundle up, form lines, be patient, be cordial – be visible.

AnAmericaninPeril 12/01/2010 4:21am
in reply to donnyshaw Nov 30, 2010 12:12pm

U.99 – WWI

Unemployed/99ers Will Work Initiative

Mission: Spur action on (i) U.S. job creation, (ii) extension of EUC and (iii) Tier V Legislation

Objective: Sustained Visibility

Frequency: Every day, in one form or another – to the extent you are willing and able

Intensity: Full court press – pedal to the metal – all in

Duration: Until EUC Extension & Tier V legislation are passed and the national unemployment rate (truly) drops below 5%

Location: Anytown, USA

stella87 12/01/2010 4:14am
in reply to stella87 Dec 01, 2010 2:36am

What I should have said was if you can make it on unemployment you can find a low paying job and still make it.(they are out there) As a country we cannot afford more spending. Do I agree we need to help people, yes, but what we really need is to help ourselves!!!!! And lets not forget the Rep’s alone did not cause this both parties have to take the blame and so do we. We have kept same these people in office for way too long. Look back to the last 50 years in our history and see who has had control in both or one of houses the majority of the time. This problem began a long time ago!!!! Not just with the last president!!!!

Pharmer1 12/01/2010 3:36am
in reply to Adambomb Nov 30, 2010 12:18pm

Didn’t think we were allowed to say “christmas” anymore. Is Government allowed to recognize such a thing????
Back in the day, that was a time for enhanced, Private, Free Will, Charitable Acts.

Ktula7 12/01/2010 3:06am

Merry Christmas to our Government…while they go on with their lavish lifestyles, pay for their childrens’ elite college tuitions, and feast on caviar, we’ll be happy that our electric bill is paid, or we have oil in our tanks to heat our homes, or that our homes aren’t in foreclosure…I’m sure your Holidays will be full of cheer…

jlohman 12/01/2010 2:51am

So my vote for the Republicans went to support a very greedy segment of our population? That’s NOT what I intended. That extension of tax breaks for the wealthy is estimated to cost $800 billion? Or is that okay?

Oh, those will create jobs!!! Or will they? Where are all of the jobs Bush created with the original tax cut for the wealthy? Oh, you say, they are in China and India!!!

At some point the conservatives must recognize that the elitists and their bribed politicians are raping our country. Do something about it!

stella87 12/01/2010 2:36am

My husband lost his job just like alot of people and collected unemployment for about 30 weeks and still could not find a job making close to what he was making. But he hated the fact we were living off the government. He was bringing in $1200 a month on unemployment and it was not easy but we were making it, so he went out and found a job making $8.50 an hour almost the same as unemployment. He found the job in less then one day of looking. He did that while he still looked for a better job and thankfully he found one. Its not easy but unlike the government we cut cut cut our spending. To me my kids Christmas was not wonderful last year. But if you ask them now they would tell you it was!!!! Our story may be unusual, but living without the nonessentials is easier then people think.

mcelyea8000 12/01/2010 1:58am


laughingatthehypocrites 11/30/2010 9:35pm


From Warren Buffet (Seen on ABC News):

“Billionaire Warren Buffett said that the Bush tax cuts should be allowed to expire for the richest Americans and that the “trickle down” economic theory hasn’t worked.

“If anything, taxes for the lower and middle class and maybe even the upper middle class should even probably be cut further,” Buffett told ABC News in an interview set to air later this week. “But I think that people at the high end — people like myself — should be paying a lot more in taxes. We have it better than we’ve ever had it.”

“The rich are always going to say that, you know, just give us more money and we’ll go out and spend more and then it will all trickle down to the rest of you. But that has not worked the last 10 years, and I hope the American public is catching on,”

The Republicans & Democrats allowing this are greedy, evil and voted into office by US. They are thanking us all the way to their (non-local) bank.

laughingatthehypocrites 11/30/2010 9:28pm


And, as the independent Congressional Budget Office & John McCain’s economic adviser, Mark Zandi, agree, “providing tax cuts for the rich is the least effective way to boost the economy. The beneficiaries tend to save the money, invest it in growing markets abroad, or worse, throw more into the financial casino now reopened on Wall Street, fueling the computerized hyper-speculation that has nothing to do with productive investment.”

The top 2% and truly wealthy don’t shop at local businesses, they don’t use
local level banks to reinvest in the community, they don’t shop at the mall and walmart during the holidays, they do not do anything to bring jobs to the local community. That’s bulls*t…even Warren Buffet thinks so.

Just wanted to say my little piece. I would rather be aware than clueless like so many that I see that will suffer regardless of their precious party allegiance. Be blessed and good luck everyone…we need it.

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