A Republican Senator's act of blocking an emergency extension of unemployment benefits reveals how out of touch the GOP is with the plight of out-of-work families and confirms that we need to hold our Senators and would-be Senators accountable by looking at their campaign reports.
Last week retiring U.S. Senator Jim Bunning (R-KY), managed to halt an emergency extension of unemployment benefits and COBRA assistance, even though he knew they'd expire on Sunday night. He punched hundreds of thousands of out-of-work Americans right in the gut.
What's wrong with this guy? By threatening to vote against "cloture" (closure of filibuster debate) he stymied the efforts of the rest of Congress to help hard-hit American families muddle through a little longer on unemployment benefits until the recovery from the worst economic crisis in generations finally reaches them. Sen. Bunning is so out of touch he complained that maintaining his opposition caused him to miss a college basketball game.
Despite his claimed concern for the deficit, I'd say Sen. Bunning's real game has been the money game. Banks get bailed out, CEOs get their bonuses, but when it's time to help American families, federal deficit means no relief for them. Sen. Bunning and the party that has historically taken us in the wrong direction are using the 1994 playbook once again on America. If power and self aggrandizement is your real game, you'll take money from the highest bidder, and it's to your advantage to sack progress even if it means you miss a basketball game.
There are signs the economic recovery is stirring, but the recession has cost our fellow Americans eight million jobs. The unemployment rate remains staggeringly high, and in reality is higher than reported because it doesn't account for Americans who've stopped looking for work.
No matter what a lame duck Kentucky Senator thinks, I know Ohioans are hard working. They are frustrated, because they just want to work. When Senators are as out of touch as Jim Bunning, it's a sign of the times. How long will an unresponsive Congress whittle away at the middle class and push down hard working Americans who just want to work and take care of their families?
We need to hold our Senators and would-be Senators accountable by looking at their campaign reports. If they get money from banks that got TARP money, we can't expect they'll vote for needed banking reforms to protect consumers and hold the line on whopping bank bonuses. If they get their money from the people to whom they dole out money, it's an incestuous relationship that makes government work for the rich and not for those who work hard and play by the rules.
Blame the filibuster if you will, but the real problem is what's fueling this insanity in the first place. Ask yourself why this is happening. And when you answer honestly, remember that it's only people like you and me who can change that. Let your voice be heard, contribute what you wish or can as an everyday American, and keep talking and fighting for courage in the Senate.
Ohio Secretary of State & Democratic U. S. Senate candidate
Here is the response that I would send to the current Ohio Secretary of State if I thought that it would do any good . . .
Dear Jen Jen:
Thank you for your lovely letter lambasting lame-duck Kentucky Senator and great baseball player Jim Bunning. What is wrong with Senator Bunting wanting to know where the money will come from to fund this additional generous outlay of money we don’t have for this or for ANY reason?
In your letter you don’t offer any source of funding for this additional government outlay. Isn’ that at all important to you, Miss Moneybag? Senator Bunning rightly drew the line with this bill. Jen, are you another Soetoro/Obama-Pelosi-Reid socialist who cares nothing about indebting future generations? He merely attempted to get peoples attention about a growing deficit that the Democratic led Congress and President have worsened since the Bush years.
If the attitude expressed in your letter is an accurate reflection of your philosophy as a want-to-be United States Senator, Jen, we do not need you there. There are enough tax and spenders in Congress already. We do not need you further mucking it up.
I won’t (vote for you).
average disgusted Tea Party partiotic American