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Speaker of the House John Boehner speaking at the Values Voter Summit in Washington, DC.
The problem is, jobless people don't rank on John Boehner's priorities list.
Noting that, since the federal emergency unemployment insurance program expired in late December, "almost 2.6 million people, including more than 70,000 in Ohio, have been stripped of unemployment benefits that help them keep the lights on, rent paid, and family fed," Secretary of Labor Tom Perez has written a letter to House Speaker John Boehner urging him to allow an unemployment aid extension to come up for a vote in the House.

Perez rebuts the idea that the Senate's unemployment extension would be too hard to implement—one of Boehner's favored excuses for not bringing the measure to a vote—by noting that the governors of the high-unemployment states of Nevada and Rhode Island, the former a Republican, say their states could implement the Senate bill, and by pointing to his own experience as a state labor secretary. But most of all Perez emphasizes the human need, framing it in terms that push back against Republican accusations that jobless people are just being lazy:

In the months before and after the expiration of EUC benefits, I have met with numerous people struggling to get back into the workforce after a long period of unemployment. Their determination inspires me. Their full time job is to look for a job. One person shared that he had successfully beaten cancer years ago, and "fighting cancer was far easier than fighting long-term unemployment." I travelled to Ohio recently and met with a group of determined people seeking employment, one of whom said " I've got no quit in me, because I do not want my son ever to think that his father is a quitter." These people embody the spirit and resilience of the long-term unemployed, who are working tirelessly to get back into the workforce.
Their fight is a difficult one, though, in an economy with no jobs for 60 percent of job seekers and with people unemployed for six months or more facing discrimination. Not that Republicans care. They'd rather voters not realize it, but all their excuses about challenges implementing the Senate bill are just a thin cover for the basic view that unemployed people don't deserve help, even in a bad economy.

Originally posted to Daily Kos Labor on Wed May 07, 2014 at 11:04 AM PDT.

Also republished by Daily Kos.

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Comment Preferences

  •  This is a great big issue, one that affects (11+ / 0-)

    more and more people with every week that passes, as Boehner sits on it.
      It's an issue that requires attention and pressure from the People and from the Democrats.
       They must not be allowed to sweep so many hurting people under the rug.

    "We the People of the United States...." -U.S. Constitution

    by elwior on Wed May 07, 2014 at 11:29:57 AM PDT

    •  ... and it is a drag on the over all econcomy (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      Unemployment and food stamps stimulate growth.  The money immediately takes another lap through the economy.  Therefore the partisan divide is between the wise and the evil among us.  Some people think they are getting ahead by holding other people back, or teaching people a lesson.  Sorta of the same as hitting your kids, because you love them.

      This land is your land and this land is my land, sure, but the world is run by those that never listen to music anyway. ~ Bob Dylan ~

      by NCTim on Wed May 07, 2014 at 04:24:02 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  CA unemployment is still really bad (5+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    SGA, KrazyKitten, AnnieR, Jon Sitzman, hbk

    The official CA state unemployment rate is 8%, which is one out of every 12 people, which is actually pretty awful for the low-ball official rate. The unofficial unemployment rate has to be close to double that. Additionally, at least in the SF Bay Are but I suspect in SoCal as well, there's a ginormous workforce of marginally employed freelancers/self-employed/contractors that are just barely making it and sometimes not making it at all.

    The complete dropping of the federal unemployment insurance extension has hit the state very hard. State unemployment insurance here ends at 26 weeks. There's been no talk of extending it in the current what I consider to be a crisis situation. The things I've seen on twitter make me think there's a lot of hidden hurting here, lots of utility bills not being paid and people getting evicted, losing their houses and cars. Their savings are long-gone already. I'm wondering if lighting a fire under the asses of everyone in the state government would help the unemployment situation here.

  •  The problem is: It's the most effective way to fix (8+ / 0-)

    the economy, and you know the Rep.'s done want that to happen before fall.
    Every dollar of an unemployment payment gets spentalmost immediately, and keeps people employed in agriculture, transportation, retail and more.  It doesn't just help people who're trying to survive, it's the most effective way to increase employment.  

    Now, I ask you, who could be against improving the economy?

  •  You are a piece of shit if somebody has to even (6+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    live1, AnnieR, Jon Sitzman, Krush, thomask, a2nite

    ask for you to help people and you're milking it.

    But, Republicans want their own countrymen to starve and get sick and die off.

    So, we'll see: either Boner is a piece of shit or he's even worse.

    Legal means "good".
    [41984 | Feb 4, 2005]

    by xxdr zombiexx on Wed May 07, 2014 at 02:00:32 PM PDT

  •  Why are we paying this man? (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    imicon, hbk, Eric Nelson

    Because we have to?  Maybe it's time the American people determine whether congress gets paid or not.  I know, wish in one hand ...  But this is absurd.  What exactly has he done since he became speaker?  What other job can you sit on your ass for years doing absolutely nothing and pull in a 6 figure salary plus perks.  This has gone way past the point of absurd.

    Michelle Nunn is running for Senate here in GA and in one of her commercials she says congress should not get paid if they don't pass a budget.  I think that's a first good step towards prodding these people to actually work.

    The GOP will destroy anything they can't own.

    by AnnieR on Wed May 07, 2014 at 02:01:57 PM PDT

  •  i know there is a non conspiracy rule here (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    MufsMom, Krush

    but really- it is like there is a plan to make america turn into a third world country- and do it fast.

    on a another note-
    boehner is now matching the orange of DK. more conspiracy!

  •  Why wasn't this part of the Murray/Ryan budget? (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    Why would Democrats vote for a budget that didn't extend UI?

  •  The Boner wants a provision in the bill that will (0+ / 0-)

    create jobs.  In other words, he will not allow this to come to a vote without the KXL pipeline.  Despicable.

    The sun's not yellow, it's chicken. B. Dylan

    by bgblcklab1 on Wed May 07, 2014 at 02:42:00 PM PDT

  •  Apparently Only Rich People Deserve Help (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    That's why we keep cutting their taxes and giving corporate handouts while we cut programs for people who actually need help to stay in their homes and feed their children.

    And heaven forbid that we do something that would REALLY create jobs and not just push a pipeline that will make lots of money for people who already have too much.

    I think I'll just shut up before I say something really nasty about Republicans.

    "The Trouble with the rat race is that even if you win, you're still a rat." attributed to Lily Tomlin

    by uniqity on Wed May 07, 2014 at 02:49:13 PM PDT

  •  Denying UI: Another front in GOP War on the Poor (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    bgblcklab1, QuelleC, a2nite

    Let's face it.  Failing to restart unemployment insurance for those have lost unemployment coverage is just another front in the GOP's War on the Poor.  As soon as someone loses their unemployment coverage, they are by definition poor.  And once a person becomes poor, that person is considered an enemy by the GOP, subject to all the contempt and wrath the GOP can summon in its War on the Poor.  These GOP bastards are so busy fighting the poor that it's no wonder they fail to accomplish anything in Congress.      

    •  many are not poor (0+ / 0-)

      I am a middle class guy who lost my job of 20 years. At age 60 trying to get a career position is almost impossible. After 26 weeks od UI in Feb I lost benefits and started living off my 401 K. I am luckier than most I had savings.
      Long story made short I used to make 50k a year and I found a crappy job as asst mgr in a pool supply company for half the money, again I am luckier than most. How many people are in the street because of the republicans, how any sane person can vote for them is beyond me.

      •  They have the nerve to call UI an "entitlement"... (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:

        Isn't that what you were paying taxes for during those 20 years?!  Literally, money was taken out of every paycheck to cover just this kind of contingency.  Now, if their rich friends went & crashed the economy & now our system is over-burdened by too many people drawing on their UI all at once, well then maybe the GOP should get those 1%ers responsible to foot the bill.  Americans aren't asking for charity, just what's fair!!

  •  Already happens: (0+ / 0-)

    Capitalism destroys human labor force and goes to the next phase

  •  Blame it on the right (0+ / 0-)

    They plan to keep this up as long as we have Pres. Obama and they keep getting elected.  Why do Americans keep voting against themselves? When will these people learn?  Probably not until they have sunk the middles class and we all are poor.  How can you not want to help your fellow Americans?  What is wrong with you? Mathis country has never been as bad as it is now.  We are going down fast and will not be able to crawl out of this mess.  They are doing this to terrorize each and every one of us.  They want everyone to crawl to them for meager paying jobs.  

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