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Nancy Pelosi speaks during a visit by U.S. Representatives discussing bilateral relationships between Egypt and the U.S., in Cairo March 15, 2012. REUTERS/Esam Al-Fetori (EGYPT - Tags: POLITICS)
I think maybe we need these two to give each other a phone call:
Extension of unemployment insurance should have been a part of the deal. I'll push for an extension when Senate convenes after the New Year.
Just because House Republicans are content to let unemployment insurance run out on 1.3 million people over the holidays doesn't mean the Senate shouldn't try. Let the Republicans filibuster it if they must.
Join 166 Dems in urging House GOP not to leave w/o extending #UI. Leaving 1.3m Americans without help or hope over the holidays is immoral.
The key here is whether House Republicans will be content to go home without extending unemployment insurance for all the Americans whose help will expire in the coming weeks. We all know the answer to that one is a resounding, boastful yes, but can Democrats bring any leverage to bear to keep it from happening?

The only tool Pelosi would seem to have is refusing to support the budget deal unless a UI extension is included. You can send them all the letters you like urging them to not be bastards about these things, but will the fight be there to actually block them from going home until something is done about it?

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Comment Preferences

  •  Then it's over for me. (18+ / 0-)

    From what I understand, since my state UI runs out December 24th, even if Congress reinstates the EUC program in the New Year, my window already will have passed and I'll be ineligible.  Just got fired at the absolute worst time, I guess.

    Should have paid more attention to my crystal ball, and got myself fired earlier (or later, as the case may be).

    •  You didn't built it. (4+ / 0-)

      That's why the "I Built This" Republicans and Democrats would say.

      They won't understand unless/until it happens to them, which they won't believe could happen to them. Until then, whether they sympathize or not, most will think it's something you somehow brought on yourself. You and the vast majority of the populace out there that is or has been in your place.

      Trust, but verify. - Reagan
      Vote, but Occupy. - commonmass

      When the rich have tripled their share of the income and wealth yet again, Republicans will still blame the poor and 3rd Way Democrats will still negotiate.

      by Words In Action on Wed Dec 11, 2013 at 12:46:24 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Spent my whole adult life building it. (11+ / 0-)

        The real problem was, I built it for other people, paying dues into one of the most skilled professions out there (molecular virology).  However, when it came to get an actual job and start a career, I found all the ladders were pulled up, all the jobs were temp, and grants were getting ever rarer and ever shorter.  (It was just such a temp job that put me on UI in the first place).

        I'm someone even the Republicans have trouble saying is "surplus population" to my face, since it was their precious taxpayer dollars that paid for 15 years of training.  But now, apparently, they're willing to throw all that (and me) away without a second thought.

        •  The Ghost of Christmas Past is watching and will (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          ArchTeryx, daeros

          visit the Scrooges in Congress any day now.  The Ghost of Christmas Future is waiting for them in the cemetery where she will show them their Tombstones with dates as to their political demises.
          I hope they are all stricken with a severe and terribly painful attack of guilt.

          Putting the fun back in dysfunctional.

          by hawkseye on Wed Dec 11, 2013 at 01:48:20 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

        •  America didn't become great by treating (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:

          its scientists in this negative manner in the job market and in educational/research institutions.

          All of the false claims of shortages of technically competent workers being used as justification for importing technical workers or exporting technical work is also a bum rap for scientists and engineers in the United States.

  •  I don't think the budget deal missing UI (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    shoeless, HeyMikey

    extensions was a problem, because UI extensions happening aren't beholden to being included in the budget deal. However, it would be a real atrocity socially and economically for the benefits to expire so near the holidays.

    While you dream of Utopia, we're here on Earth, getting things done.

    by GoGoGoEverton on Wed Dec 11, 2013 at 12:36:46 PM PST

    •  They will never be passed as a standalone. (6+ / 0-)

      No way that makes it to the floor of the House. The only way was to get them in the budget deal, but whatever Murray was willing to offer for them apparently wasn't enough to entice Ryan.

      So they are gone. All that's left now is to try to squeeze some politial silver lining out of it.

      But UI will not be extended. I've accepted that much completely.

      •  I hope you're wrong about its chances (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Mr MadAsHell

        and I damn well hope we make the House Repubs table an extension proposal, and also send them one from the Senate.

        While you dream of Utopia, we're here on Earth, getting things done.

        by GoGoGoEverton on Wed Dec 11, 2013 at 01:11:07 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  I think they already have tabled such an extension (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:

          haven't they?

          The hard truth is that advocating for the jobless in this country simply isn't a political winner. Whether or not we can glean some small advantage from this in 2014 is irrespective of the fact that there is no way to shame Republicans into passing this... because most Americans simply don't care.

      •  Not putting it in budget deal is conceding defeat (8+ / 0-)

        We know it, Hill Dems know it, and WH knows it.  Once budget deal passes Congress and is signed into law, the gig is up.

        Some men see things as they are and ask why. I dream of things that never were and ask why not?

        by RFK Lives on Wed Dec 11, 2013 at 01:11:42 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  Pretty much. (0+ / 0-)

          I wish they had fought harder, but I also understand that Republicans are, by and large, content to pass teh status quo (full sequester) without any modifiers at all.

          That means Ryan was in a much, much stronger bargaining position going into this than Murray was.

          I'm just glad we're not talking about CPI right now...

      •  This attitude baffles me. (5+ / 0-)

        "The house won't pass it, there's no reason to even try."

        Except for Democrats making a big deal out of fighting for the unemployed who need those benefits. Especially with 2014 just around the corner.

        But hey, I've been noticing more and more Democrats shrugging their shoulders and "accepting" it when public workers and the unemployed and the poor get shafted in the name of bipartisanship. Bipartisanship with Paul Ryan for fuck's sake.

        Keep on with the deficit hysteria. Keep on not actually proposing anything that will help the American people, even if the specific bill won't pass right now. Just keep doing that and blame any 2014 losses on those damn Progressives and Millenials not turning out.

        Banking on the American people to be able to sort all this out and declare the adult in the room the winner is a very big bet. -Digby

        by Boogalord on Wed Dec 11, 2013 at 01:19:56 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  "Realism." This is a reality-based community. (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:

          The reality is that UI has zero chance of passing the House, unless tied to something Republicans desperately want.

          Avoiding another shutdown is something that Republicans (in leadership) desperately want.

          This was the chance, the only foreseeable chance, that we had. And it's gone.

        •  I agree screw reality (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:

          This afternoon I spoke to sen. Menendez's office. My message to the Senator was that I am fine with forcing the Republicans filibuster a revised bill that includes UI.

          Democrats have to fight for what we want. It is our job to Change " reality".

          Hey dumb dumbs, if tax cuts created jobs, we would have so many jobs that we would glady let the illegals come in.

          by hkorens on Wed Dec 11, 2013 at 02:39:11 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

    •  If you REALLY think UI benefits will get a vote (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      In the House of Representatives, then I have a bridge for sale....CHEAP!

      "Given the choice between a Republican and someone who acts like a Republican, people will vote for a real Republican every time." Harry Truman

      by MargaretPOA on Wed Dec 11, 2013 at 02:23:56 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  happy holidays repo style (5+ / 0-)

    and yes it is immoral.
    i really need to invest in a good four letter word dictionary. aw shucks and doggonit just dont work well when describing the repubs.

    and FU is so overused with them.

  •  Man's inhumanity to man, says RJ Eskow in HuffPost (10+ / 0-)

    "let's look at the facts: Federal workers will be expected to subsidize this deal with an increase in their out-of-pocket pension costs. There will be cuts to Medicare. Airline passengers will pay a new tax. Military retirees -- military retirees -- will see their benefits cut.

    And the long-term unemployed, who have paid dearly for Wall Street's excesses, will receive no extension of benefits. The sequester's cuts were disastrous, but this deal is needlessly punitive. It's mean-spirited toward people who are struggling through no fault of their own, people who have chosen a life of public service, and the middle class in general," he says.

    Pretty awful.

  •  Blame the Republicans (4+ / 0-)

    and let it happen.

    Trust, but verify. - Reagan
    Vote, but Occupy. - commonmass

    When the rich have tripled their share of the income and wealth yet again, Republicans will still blame the poor and 3rd Way Democrats will still negotiate.

    by Words In Action on Wed Dec 11, 2013 at 12:43:03 PM PST

  •  Whine and bleat and point at republicans. (7+ / 0-)

    Who made them do it.

    “The road to success is always under construction” --Lily Tomlin

    by CarolinNJ on Wed Dec 11, 2013 at 12:43:41 PM PST

  •  Giving Paul Ryan the opportunity to sell himself (13+ / 0-)

    in 2016 as a "bipartisan candidate" who can "reach across the aisle and find common ground with Democrats" was a huge mistake.  

    Patty Murray just gave him a huge gift of padding around all those sharp pointy ultraconservative edges.

    That's one more thing to add to my long list of small problems. --my son, age 10

    by concernedamerican on Wed Dec 11, 2013 at 12:46:19 PM PST

  •  If Democrats won't go to the mattresses (15+ / 0-)

    for the unemployed, what good are they?

    •  Democrats in Congress did go to the mattresses (6+ / 0-)

      they went to sleep.

      The most important way to protect the environment is not to have more than one child.

      by nextstep on Wed Dec 11, 2013 at 01:03:17 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  subspecies... (0+ / 0-)

      In America, over the last dozen years or so, humans have evolved in a disturbing way:  

      -- first, there are the winner-take-all types, whose interests are deemed to be the sole interests of "the people" and whose desires dictate government action by those who espouse, exclusively, the survival-of-the-fittest philosophy;

      -- second, there are the barely-getting-bys, the folks who are barely mentioned because they haven't adapted, adjusted or otherwise developed superior strengths;

      -- finally, there are the dinosaurs who have become extinct because they are old, poor, less healthy in one way or another, long-term unemployed, employed in "meaningless" endeavors, such as fast food service, military service, police/fire department service or educational service or just otherwise worthy of no thought and no mention.   These are the sub-species, who are considered to be sub-human and deserving of nothing.

  •  I wonder how much Democrats in Congress really (9+ / 0-)

    support keeping emergency unemployment insurance.

    Because of how the unemployment rate U3 is calculated, this reported rate will decline as it will treat more of the unemployed as having left the labor market - and therefore don't get counted in the unemployment rate.

    Democrats at risk in the 2014 election may want to see reported unemployement be lower to help their re-election prospects.

    Right now it looks like Congressional Democrats are saying the words that they want to continue emergency unemployment, but I don't see the actions behind this.

    The most important way to protect the environment is not to have more than one child.

    by nextstep on Wed Dec 11, 2013 at 12:48:59 PM PST

  •  How many lumps of coal does it take... (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    4Freedom, Heart of the Rockies fill a Congressional office?

  •  Pelosi is more urgent, House leaves this week whil (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    4Freedom, gramofsam1, shoeless

    e senate is in all next week.

  •  Will Dems approve doc fix but not unemployment ext (0+ / 0-)

    Rumor is that the doc fix will be tacked onto the budget deal.  Will Democrats let the doc fix go through without any help for the unemployed?

  •  They'll leave. They always do. nt (0+ / 0-)
  •  Why is this not a part of the budget deal? (5+ / 0-)

    Why do I keep voting for Sherrod Brown when his liberal stance on my issues is cancelled out by the likes of Dick Durbin and other so-called Democrats?


    What a shame.

    •  It's not part of the budget deal (3+ / 0-)

      for the same reason Single Payer was never "on the table" during the earliest dealings for the PPACA.

      It was a chip spent before anyone went to the table. It was a bone thrown just to get the buggerers to the table.

      Neither single payer or UI should have been abused that way. But that is part and parcel of the disconnect between Washington D.C. and real Americans.

      Peace is not merely a distant goal that we seek, but a means by which we arrive at that goal. - Martin Luther King, Jr.

      by Gentle Giant on Wed Dec 11, 2013 at 01:07:54 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  "Why is this not a part of the budget deal?" (0+ / 0-)

      Because the White House cut Pelosi off at the knees when she insisted that U/E benefits be part of the budget deal.

      Same as it ever was.

  •  GOP: the party of the lump of coal in a stocking (0+ / 0-)
    The only tool Pelosi would seem to have is refusing to support the budget deal unless a UI extension is included. You can send them all the letters you like urging them to not be bastards about these things, but will the fight be there to actually block them from going home until something is done about it?

    Warning - some snark may be above‽ (-9.50; -7.03)‽ eState4Column5©2013 "I’m not the strapping young Muslim socialist that I used to be" - Barack Obama 04/27/2013

    by annieli on Wed Dec 11, 2013 at 01:04:49 PM PST

  •  Democrats should be working on taking the purse (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    VirginiaBlue, ChemBob

    away from Republicans -- and I don't mean just elected Dems.

    Recommended by:

    Perhaps, the time has come to think about extending Social Security and Medicare to those 55 and older.  This could be paid for in the following way:
    Change the pay roll tax by reducing it from 6 to 5 per cent on the first $1,000,000 the first 250,000 would be matched by the employer.   A graduated upward tax on all earnings (gross income) above that amount would be applied which could look something like this:          
    The first $1,000,000              5%
    $1M   -   5M                     +2%
    $5M   -   & above             +3%
    Everything paid above the first $5,000 would be a tax deduction.  In other words a person making one million dollars would pay $50,000 of which $45,000 would be tax deductible.  Someone fortunate enough to be making $10,000,000 would pay $5,00000  plus $80,000 or 2% on the next $4M and $150,000 or 3% on the final $5M for a total of $280,000 or 2.80% of earnings of which $275,000 would be tax deductible.
    By raising the minimum wage to $15/h would be another source of funding.  Finally the social security dividend should be raised by 10%.

  •  President Obama seems very happy .... (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Glenn45, socialismorbarbarism have this bill. See, Washington can work together!

    The unemployed, and their needed benefits, seem to be an after thought. Sure, the President says that the bill for the unemployed should be passed. But the statement he issued was mainly about the "great compromise bill"!

  •  What will the Dems do? (5+ / 0-)

    Point a lot of fingers and then do nothing.  Followed by a lot of pleas for money.

    Sarcasm on...It is so nice I live in a post racial America...Sarcasm off.

    by wbishop3 on Wed Dec 11, 2013 at 01:26:24 PM PST

  •  Hey Ms. Pelosi -- tell Boner up er down vote on UB (0+ / 0-)

    or you can find enough votes for this turkey on your own.

    That would do it. But will she?  Probably not.

  •  Weak Dem leadership. (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    Reid should be pushing this to the floor before holiday adjournment.

    Obama should be on the news about this.

    "The true strength of our nation comes not from the might of our arms or the scale of our wealth, but from the enduring power of our ideals." - Barack Obama

    by HeyMikey on Wed Dec 11, 2013 at 01:47:22 PM PST

  •  What Will Dems do? (0+ / 0-)

    I don't know-it's hard to tell with 'em these days--I have better luck "winning" at the Craps Table.
    I can say what I believe they Should do---
    Step 1. Look in the nearest mirror: "Remind self Why I came here in the first place."

    Step 2. Draw Line in Sand & Stand for the people.

    Step 3. Do Not Cross Line in Sand.

    Step 4. The People win and so do they ;)

  •  They're going to fucking bleat about it (0+ / 0-)

    When they aren't convincing each other how rock ass stupid their base voters are. Okay, raise your hand if you seriously think UI benefits will get a vote in BONER's House of Representatives. Yeah, nobody is really that stupid and simultaneously capable of typing.

    "Given the choice between a Republican and someone who acts like a Republican, people will vote for a real Republican every time." Harry Truman

    by MargaretPOA on Wed Dec 11, 2013 at 02:21:56 PM PST

  •  the hit public workers get in the deal is the prob (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    greenbell, socialismorbarbarism

    problem, as well as, the unemployment insurance

    it's a pay cut, essentially.

    Growth for the sake of growth is the ideology of the cancer cell. --Edward Abbey

    by greenbastard on Wed Dec 11, 2013 at 02:22:16 PM PST

  •  Here's Another Thing About This Deal (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    zaka1, greenbastard, jbsoul

    When will federal employees stop being punching bags for the DC Elites? Obama has frozen federal pay ever since he's been president and we witness one attack after another on federal benefits, with the latest in this "bipartisan" deal.

    I've heard Cons argue against public workers and public employee unions on the basis that workers should not be able to choose the people who set their salaries because that political support might "corrupt" the politicians into undue generosity. Well, that meme has turned out false and instead we have politicians attacking public workers.

    So I guess we do need those unions after all. Or new elected leaders. Or both.

    •  The trouble is the workers in the private (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      socialismorbarbarism, jbsoul

      sector have been the punching bags for years, now the federal workers are taking the heat for the tapped out private sectors workers.

      This how the elite stay the elite.  They make everyone poor except them.  And this is always, always, what gets the elite's asses in a sling time and again throughout history.

      They think the poor and middle class envy them, but that isn't true.  The problem is when the elite flaunt their wealth to hungry broke populations who know that the elite stole a decent life from them.  And honestly, the people of earth are much more educated than ever, and not blind to this stupid behavior by the elite.  

      "During times of universal deceit, telling the truth becomes a revolution­ary act. " George Orwell

      by zaka1 on Wed Dec 11, 2013 at 03:18:14 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  they are pitting workers against each other (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        zaka1, jbsoul

        after decimating private sector unions, they are now coming after the public unions

        they want no floor to the pay scale and no resistance to the attacks

        once public unions and workers are neutralized, the race to the bottom will accelerate

        you're right: it is unsustainable

        •  Yep, they got us (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          socialismorbarbarism, jbsoul

          wrapped up tight in a net like fish caught at sea.  There is no place to go, they have destroyed most the economies in the world, and still the elite are getting all they need to sustain themselves, but not us.  They are the ones that need to lower their standard of living because the world can not sustain the blood suckers forever like they think.  

          The only question is how do the people get their power back.  If only we could compromise with them, if only they could hear us and make changes.  That is what any of us hope for in a Democracy.

          "During times of universal deceit, telling the truth becomes a revolution­ary act. " George Orwell

          by zaka1 on Wed Dec 11, 2013 at 03:29:32 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  it's interesting (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            jbsoul, zaka1

            do the elites not recognize the rising anger? the arrogance of power can be blinding

            or is it that they do see the rising anger but have decided it's best to just steal everything and lock up tight?

            •  I don't think they (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:

              personally understand just how angry people are.  They have surrounded themselves in a bubble filled with others just like themsevles.   And as long as they can keep stealing money from the masses the game keeps on going.  But then, something major happens, like the 2008 crash, and their greedy impulsiveness and insane thinking get exposed.  2008 was our wake up call and something about that whole Hank Paulson "oops," moment just doesn't sit right with many Americans.

              I honestly believe for the most part the elite are the only ones who think so highly of themselves, which means they make stupid decisions and mistakes that always throughout history gets them in a lot of trouble or bounced out of power.  

              I think they will keep going until we have another Hank Paulson/Wall Street moment, or some other crisis happens.  But, honestly they are not aware of anything but themselves.  And they will stab anyone in the back to get what they want.  We talked about this in my psychopathology classes.  They just don't look like criminals because they have the money to cover up their illness.

              "During times of universal deceit, telling the truth becomes a revolution­ary act. " George Orwell

              by zaka1 on Wed Dec 11, 2013 at 09:02:47 PM PST

              [ Parent ]

  •  And One More Thing (0+ / 0-)

    Congress Avoids Reality, Again

    To date, neither party has been willing to offer a comprehensive and balanced plan. While the Obama administration has come closest, with a 10-year plan that would reduce the deficit by $1.8 trillion — and that includes meaningful Social Security reforms — it has been unwilling or unable to advance its agenda.
    Ten years just happens to be the life of The Sequester (though it has apparently been partially extended with this budget deal). If you think the White House wants the Sequester gone, I think you are mistaken. The Sequester is the centerpiece of the Obama budget and will only be replaced by a Grand Bargain cutting social security. Since the Grand Bargain isn't forthcoming right now, The Sequester is the consolation prize for the White House.
  •  Unemployment benefits (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    running out, and so is the patience of the American people.  That is why congress has a single digit approval rating.  Geez, when you ship out six million jobs out of your economy for cheaper labor, it is going to f*^k your economy and the people that live in that economy.  When you decide to reward the people in the financial markets with big bailouts that is never ending (QE EASING) it is also going to f*&k your economy and the people.  And the people have told this to Washington, over and over, over and over, and over and over.  Perhaps Washington elites need to use their benefits to get their hearing checked, because it is working.

    "During times of universal deceit, telling the truth becomes a revolution­ary act. " George Orwell

    by zaka1 on Wed Dec 11, 2013 at 03:11:50 PM PST

  •  The problem is (0+ / 0-)

    if there was no budget deal, the default would be an extension of current spending which included all of the sequester. The Republican majority in the House was all for that. If the Patty Murray had demanded more, the Pubs would have charged the Dems with failing to negotiate and bringing on another shutdown. Again Republicans in the House would welcome a shutdown they could blame on the Democrats. Tie ball game, one shutdown each.

    As it stands, the Democrats can bring to the Senate a bill to reinstate unemployment insurance - which incidentally is not wildly popular because it's not just Republicans who have the idea that people who lost their jobs because of the recession don't deserve to eat food or live in decent housing. Many people who might tend to favor Democrats harbor such delusions.

    If Democrats make their case to the public, especially if Republican Senators filibuster an unemployment bill, the Democrats can gain momentum going to the fall elections and stand a chance at winning back the House and retaining the Senate.

    Otherwise, this whole thing is just the usual "make the middle class pay", and we might as well take to the streets.

    Keep yer gubmint hands off my health care rebate.

    by ebrann on Wed Dec 11, 2013 at 05:12:51 PM PST

  •  Figure is now 174 Dems...please see if your (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    rep hasn't yet signed and give them a call.   List in this diary:


  •  This is a return to the norm (0+ / 0-)

    It used to be that Congress did a lot of things outside the pervue of omnibus bills. But they've been doing it so much of late that people have come to think that it is the normal way of doing things.

    It is not.

    Using the budget deal as leverage to get something is a flawed way of thinking about it.

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