GOP’s Ill-Conceived, Irresponsible & Illogical Plan to Reduce (but Actually Increase) the Federal Deficit
STEP 2: Capitalize the Republican’s recent gains in Congress as a “mandate” to slash government spendings on social services at every opportunity – even the spendings that are critical to the nation’s economic recovery.
STEP 3: Block the Democrat’s attempt to extend the federal unemployment insurance just in time for the Thanksgiving and Christmas holiday season. All the GOP needs is 143 heartless Republican members of Congress to vote against the extension to kill the bill. What better way to show those 2.8 million poor, lazy, long-term unemployed workers who’s the boss? Never mind that the nation’s unemployment rate is still above 9%, and the job recovery has been excruciatingly slow. Who cares if it’s taking longer and longer to find and land a job because employment opportunities are scarce and there are a lot of desperate people competing for each job opening? Don’t be fooled by these rational explanations. Just remember the GOP’s modus operandi: the best time to kick people is when they’re down!
STEP 4: Go on a media blitz to preach fiscal discipline, deficit reduction, and a balanced budget. Don’t give the liberal media elite an opportunity to analyze the real impact of eliminating the federal unemployment insurance at this precarious state in the economic recovery. When a reporter asks about how eliminating the unemployment benefits will take out $80 billion from the US economy (most of which are spent on food, clothing, and utilities at the local level) and could lead to further job loss due to the decline in consumer spending, respond with “people’s mandate” and “fiscal discipline.” Repeat until the reporter moves on to another question. If a reporter questions whether the reduced consumer spending and subsequent job losses would actually increase the federal deficit because of lowered tax revenues, just respond with “deficit” and “Democrats” in an authoritative manner.
STEP 5: Just blame the Democrats when things go wrong. Blame the Democrats for allowing Republicans to kill the unemployment insurance extension. Blame the Democrats for allowing the Republicans to ruin the holidays for millions of unemployed Americans. Blame the Democrats for the reduced consumer spending during a critical juncture in the economic recovery. Blame the Democrats for the job loss that resulted from the reduced consumer spending. Blame the Democrats for the higher deficit from the resulting lowered tax revenues. Remember to blame the Democrats even if everything is actually the Republican’s fault!
- HR 6419: Emergency Unemployment Compensation Continuation Act
- Final vote results for Roll Call 579 on HR 6419 (Emergency Unemployment Extension bill)
- US Congress Joint Economic Committee Report on Extending the Federal Unemployment Insurance Program (November 2010)
- California Budget Project report on the impact of the failure to extend federally supported unemployment insurance benefits (November 2010)
- WSJ.com: House rejects unemployment extension bill
- LATimes.com: Failure to pass unemployment extension insurance could cost billions, reports say
- NYTimes.com: Republicans stymie Democrats on top measures
Check out this list of the House members who have voted AGAINST extending the unemployment benefits for out-of-work Americans. Then call, write or email your Congressman and tell him to vote for the federal unemployment insurance extension.