It seems simple enough, Congress has the money and power to help the massive number of unemployed in their midst. But Congress isn’t doing it, and many Americans without a job are now also without unemployment benefits as well, according to the U.S. Chronicle.
Democrat Senator Harry Reid votes against unemployment extension bill
Both parties claim to have a concern for the unemployed that is growing daily, yet both parties seem to be under the impression that time is not their enemy. This is especially true of Democrat Senator Harry Reid of Nevada, who actually chose to vote ‘Nay’ for the unemployment extension bill. Reid, boasting a lengthy service record in Congress, undoubtedly realized his ‘Nay’ vote would only cause more delays for hurting constituents.
For the unemployed, time has become a very real enemy, as their only financial lifeline just got cut, and it now looks like it will be two more weeks before any hope of a rescue rope will even be thrown to them. Thus, adopting Reid’s ‘patient’ outlook cannot be seen as a helpful approach by the hurting masses as they wait for an unemployment extension bill to be passed.
Reid’s assurances that he voted ‘Nay’ in order to force a re-vote at a later date cannot bring much comfort to unemployed people who may not have a ‘later date’ in which to pay their bills or delay feeding their families.
Republican Representative Dean Heller crosses aisle, votes for bill
On the flip side, House representative Dean Heller of Nevada parted ways with fellow republicans by reaching across the aisle and voting ‘Yea’ for the unemployment benefits extension bill. Heller’s reasoning should be mirrored in the Congress by both parties, “While I believe that this legislation should have been paid for, I cannot vote against the unemployment extension when so many Nevadans are struggling to get by.”
Heller’s support of the bill, in spite of the questionable funding source for it, speaks to his committment to the constituents in his state. Heller exemplifies a ‘for the people’ service attitude in Congress; a stark contrast to fellow Nevadan Reid and his purposeful delay of the vote.
Dereliction of duty
The Senate closed up shop for its customary vacation time this week, in spite of the fact that over a million of their combined constituents may not even have a meal for the Independence holiday this weekend. Some consider this dereliction of duty akin to a medical doctor refusing to perform an emergency operation just because his shift was over.
Democrat Senator Harry Reid’s ‘Nay’ vote, however, forced the Senate into a standstill. Reid’s ‘Nay’ vote has all but prohibited the unemployed from getting any successful bill resolution until mid-July.
What’s really causing the bill to not pass?
Republicans and democrats alike have expressed a desire to pass the bill immediately, but they differ with Reid and the Democrats on how it is to be funded. Democrats want to pay for the bill by borrowing additional funding from foreign entities. Republicans question why the desire to borrow funds at all when the money is just sitting there ready to be used.
“There are ways to pay for this extension, and help the unemployed without contributing to the deficit,” Republican House member Dean Heller said. And Heller is right. Monies borrowed for the stimulus projects still remain and, in fact, is left over from nonuse last year–for job creation projects, no less. But for some reason the democratic party has dug in their heels, insisting they must borrow more money, increasing the deficit.
America’s unemployed want action from Congress
America’s unemployed, not as caring of the fine line that is really deciding their fate, continues to express outrage that there is even a debate in the first place. All they can think about is the fact they will not have any income until this bill is passed.
Congress is supposed to be a ‘for the people’ government. The best interest of the people is supposed to take precedent over political posturing. It is Congress’ job to keep down costs and use the monies already in their pocket before committing taxpayers to more debt. If they followed that basic rule this law would have already passed.
Insisting on growing the deficit by funding this bill with more borrowed money is the reason it has not passed. Sen. Harry Reid appears to be the main proponent of that approach and House rep. Dean Heller seems to be the one having to take the high road and vote for a bill on those negligent terms in order to help the American unemployed get their benefits extended at all. Both Reid and Heller hail from the state of Nevada.
Las Vegas Review-Journal.com