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Senate Moves Unemployment Bill, but Obama Won’t Compromise

by Keith Koffler on January 7, 2014, 12:56 pm

In a surprise, the Senate is on track to approve a three-month extension of unemployment benefits, but the White House is refusing compromise by trying to find offsets for the $6.5 billion cost, all but guaranteeing that the House won’t pass the bill and the measure will end up as a political pawn for Democrats.

“The president believes that this is an emergency situation,” said White House Press Secretary Jay Carney today in ruling out paying for the benefits. The House “should follow the admirable lead of the Senate and pass the bill,” after which, Carney vaguely promised “we and Congress can continue to talk about how to move forward” after the three months are up.

The Senate came up with 60 votes needed to overcome procedural hurdles and allow a final up-or-down vote, with more Republicans signing on than expected.

In remarks at the White House, Obama insisted that the House pass the bill too.

“We’ve got to get this across the finish line without obstruction or delay,” Obama said. “And we need the House of Representatives to be able to vote for it as well.”

But with the White House refusing to compromise, that seems unlikely. House Speaker Boehner today reiterated that he’s not going to consider any bill that isn’t paid for

One month ago I personally told the White House that another extension of temporary emergency unemployment benefits should not only be paid for but include something to help put people back to work. To date, the president has offered no such plan. If he does, I’ll be happy to discuss it, but right now the House is going to remain focused on growing the economy and giving America’s unemployed the independence that only comes from finding a good job.

The White House sees a win-win political situation. If the bill somehow passes, Obama gets to thump away again on the issue again in three months. If it doesn’t, he’ll talk about nonstop for weeks or months and get an even better political result.

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{ 42 comments }

Geoff Caldwell January 7, 2014 at 1:04 pm

God how I loved it when he was in Hawaii.

AFVet January 7, 2014 at 2:09 pm

He’s not going to go away.
He has three more years left in his term.
If a republican is elected president we will never see him go away.
Carter never did,
Clinton never did and Gore never did.
However,…George H.W.Bush did.
George W. Bush did.
And so did Reagan.
The liberals are like gnats on a hot day, consistently in your face.
If you think that the media is going to refuse the messiah’s opinions after his term is up,.. you have another thing coming.
We are going to have to endure his image for a long time to come.

Geoff Caldwell January 7, 2014 at 2:33 pm

Gnats on a hot day, great analogy. Now I just need to start marketing my jumbo “Obama” fly swatters! Thanks for the inspiration.
Oh, what’s that? EPA on the line? Yes, this is Geoff, what’s that, my new fly swatter is an “environmental hazard”? How say? Oh the fact that since Dear Leader’s image is emblazoned on both sides so many flies are flocking TO the swatter extinction of the species would be only a matter of time if I mass produced?
OK, for the sake of the planet and starving spiders everywhere, I’ll discontinue the Obama Memorial Fly Swatters. Now could you please direct me to the department where I can obtain my license to market my Obama B.S. detector? Yes, it’s unique. Especially in this day and age. It involves, two ears, two eyes, a brain and something getting rarer and rare: common sense.

Lee January 7, 2014 at 2:46 pm

At least the Carter’s seem to have done for others.
As far as Clinton. After his time in the Oval Office with Company, he does not deserve respect. As I have stated, If he would have gone to the President hole in the wall motel on some back street, I could have overlooked it better. That is our White House!

Lucile B. Christiansen January 7, 2014 at 2:44 pm

like Micheal replied I am blown away that any body able to get paid $9729 in 1 month on the internet. this website… T­E­C­8­­0.C­O­M

Owen_Kellogg January 7, 2014 at 1:12 pm

The Obama Administration has been claiming that we are in an economic recovery for almost five years now. Why would we need to extend unemployment benefits?

Kimbly January 7, 2014 at 1:45 pm

There’s no time for logic here!

Langley Spook January 7, 2014 at 3:27 pm

LOL!
Thats what Ive been saying; ‘if the economy is doing good under Obama why do we need more unemployment benefits?’

I tried calling my useless “US Senators” local offices today to ask that question…

They hung up on me.

gracepmc January 7, 2014 at 2:02 pm

Because now, after 5 years and no recovery and no jobs, it’s an emergency.

And the path needs to be cleared for the next emergency tomorrow.

NH mom January 7, 2014 at 1:33 pm

Ah, the Obama “we’ll talk about paying for it AFTER it is implemented” line. This wouldn’t work for any individual wanting to get something without having a source of payment prior to the “sale.” Anyone who believes that must have believed they could keep their medical insurance, their doctors, etc.

And HOW long have these recipients of extended unemployment benefits already been on unemployment?

scottso January 7, 2014 at 1:39 pm

the problem with the GOP is that they don’t need to frame the issue.

The Democrats and WH use every issue to be about someone (whether its the poor, minorities, women). They make it person-specific.

The GOP haven’t figured out how to do that.
How to say…well we want to pay these unemployment issurance but the debt it credits affect how the unemployed and their neighbors are able to borrow. How companies can spend their money.
They use terms like, “Fiscal” which puts the average person to sleep.

It’s about Branding. Dems win on branding.
GOP couldn’t brand a steer if it were asleep, tied to a gate, and held tight by a cowboy.

AFVet January 7, 2014 at 2:41 pm

More to it than that.
Boehner will not allow a special committee with subpoena power to convene concerning the Benghazi affair.
Why ?
Is it because there is a possibility that Boehner could be implicated as complicit in the coverup ?
Wouldn’t you think that the Speaker of the House would encourage an investigation at that level ?
There have been 5 congressional hearings that have resulted in nothing more than incompetent political hacks sitting in front of a bunch more political hacks on camera attempting to make the American People believe that the congress is drilling down on the nefarious individuals that allowed this to happen.

Boehner is up for re-election in 2014.
I think he should be given the pink slip.
We need someone in his position that has the guts to stand up to Obama and his administration.

Benghazi
Fast and Furious
NSA
FBI
Border security
And all the rest that we have little or no control over until they allow US to vote again.

Time to take our Country back away from the left.

Star January 7, 2014 at 2:49 pm

People have been saying “it’s time” for a long…um….time. Electing diff people is the way to do it.

AFVet January 7, 2014 at 3:06 pm

And what do you say about the results of the 2012 election ?
The obvious fraud was never investigated .
Why ?
No recounts, no problem.
Obama won.

Julie Brueckheimer January 7, 2014 at 3:01 pm

I posted on another thread that a Democrat and a Republican working together have released a poll showing that 62% of the public want a special select committee formed on Benghazi. The Republicans seem to be indicating that Obamacare is the only issue they can or will campaign on in 2014. They can’t walk and chew gum at the same time. Or, as some people are suggesting, Boehner is cooperating with Obama/Clinton on Benghazi and quashing the truth.

Geoff Caldwell January 7, 2014 at 2:51 pm

The ONLY branding the GOP needs:
ONE picture:
A baby boy, a baby girl one each of each of the races on a single poster.
CAPTION:
In the name of “fairness” and “social justice” Obama and the Democrats have stolen $7 trillion dollars from these children in just the past five years alone. If that isn’t child abuse then what is? Help us stop the financial pedophilia NOW. Contact your local Tea Party today.
“This message paid for by the organization to revive respect and understanding of those old white guys in wigs, the Declaration of Independence, and the United States Constitution.”

scottso January 7, 2014 at 3:11 pm

to be honest, things like $17 trillion are meaningless to average people.
because they don’t know how it affects them right now or even in the future.
Economic stimulus is branding and it works.

Julie Brueckheimer January 7, 2014 at 3:07 pm

I often ask that question myself. How many of the original 99ers are still getting unemployment? This is permanent welfare.

Sadie January 7, 2014 at 1:41 pm

Another day, another game of kick the can. If the economy is so good, why does the Fed keep buying $85 billion/month of bonds.

Star January 7, 2014 at 2:50 pm

Let’s just quit throwing the “this means the economy still blows” thing in their face and think of the people facing first of the month bills.

Car in January 7, 2014 at 3:55 pm

The problem with that mode of thinking, is that nothing ever changes. There is a ROT in government and welfare, and it’s dragging us all down. Yet every time we argue for change, we get the equivalent of “THINK OF THE CHILDREN”.

99 weeks of unemployment in some states. That’s just shy of two years. And you know when most people get a new job? Just when those benefits run out.

This is all about politics, and Obama’s playing like he always does.

Star January 7, 2014 at 4:05 pm

It’s easy to judge–people should move to where there are supposedly more jobs, take a burger job (if they can get one–those are not thick on the ground), do phone sales for some never-achieved quota, etc. These are our fellow Americans stuck in a rapidly changing and restructuring economy that is being beset my bad policies retrading growth and real job creation.

Star January 7, 2014 at 4:08 pm

And you know when most people get a new job? When the benefits run out.
Show me the stats on that. That may be when people run out and quit applying. There ARE stats on how unemployable people are after being out of work a long time.

Car in January 7, 2014 at 4:22 pm

Under the new Obama economy things may have changed, but traditionally people wait until their benefits run out to start that new job. They look at it as a vacation.

Car in January 7, 2014 at 4:19 pm

Look, when the $hit hit the fan, and my husband stopped bringing home a paycheck, I started waited tables again after 11 years of staying at home with my kids. I know what it means to do what you gotta do.

Car in January 7, 2014 at 4:21 pm

ANd, I’m still waiting tables. I do I work five days a week, two of those days are doubles. 12 hours on my feet w/o a break.

And, we would have moved if that’s what it took.

Car in January 7, 2014 at 4:25 pm

Plus, let’s not pretend that unemployment $$ springs from a well. Businesses have to pay that. And I can’t tell you how many people that have tried to scam the system. People who no-show, then try to apply. ANd the COMPANY has the burden of proof.

No body has TIME for that.

Silence DoGood January 7, 2014 at 1:44 pm

An explanation of how to use the stock market as a means of saving. Good luck.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EKlmA6katVc&feature=c4-overview-vl&list=PL5U_0Xj9MRPhRPldITDpM_E5PH_WzVZ16

Michael January 7, 2014 at 1:50 pm

”we and Congress can continue to talk about how to move forward” after the three months are up”.

Thanks, Carney. That would make sense if:

- Congress had a president that they could trust
- the president sometimes told the truth.

Neither is the case; Republicans would be foolish to buy into this.

Remember the Obama definition of compromise: you come over to my side and give me what I want.

scottso January 7, 2014 at 2:13 pm

Michael, how does this sound?

“In past few years, The President has set and made many promises, redlines and guarantees he has not kept to the American people. It is hard for Congress to work in good faith with the words of the President. Forgive us for being honest but Congress and the American People have been burned too many times with several false promises made by the White House.”

Darkangel January 7, 2014 at 1:52 pm

So let me see if I understand the tinpot messiah’s demands.

Either borrow more money, impoverish future generations, and make war against posterity–who, conveniently enough, can’t vote in 2014–or I’ll accuse you of making war against the poor and needy of today, who, conveniently enough, I will make sure vote early and often in 2014.

Sick, sick, SICK!!

I swear, we need morality assessment tests for public officials. It’s to the point where I can’t turn on the news without having a bottle of Emetrol handy.

gracepmc January 7, 2014 at 2:04 pm

Keith, I can’t believe you were truly surprised that the Senate would take this up. Mitch McConnell and Harry Reid share the same playpen.

srdem65 January 7, 2014 at 2:11 pm

$6.5 Billion. They could probably find that much under the desks at the Federal Reserve. How about shutting down the whole EPA for a year while everyone studies the new bi-thousand regulations.

This is one of the issues that make for hard decisions and in the end, no one is going to be satisfied with the result.
How long must the taxpayers keep unemployed workers on the dole, or how can we cut off their only income when the job market is specific and tight?
None of us want people out on the streets, homeless, and without hope of every being employed again, but how many years do we support them in their hunt for a job?

Do we start digging ditches with shovels again, and leave the backhoe in the garage, or do we need thousands of workers to build a dam or other project with manual labor as was done in the 1930′s?
All I have are questions with no answers, no ideas.
Give them their 99 additional weeks and hope that things get better..is all I have to offer.

rawheadrex January 7, 2014 at 2:28 pm

A liberal never makes the same mistake twice….thirty, forty times, but never just twice. Unfortunately, a half-dozen republican senators are helping this time. It is getting to be time to clean house in congress.

Star January 7, 2014 at 2:46 pm

Buy that fabulous president a nice Top Ramen dinner!

Lee January 7, 2014 at 2:58 pm

If he cared so much. Why didn’t he bring this up before his VACATION that we paid for with out Tax Dollars?
That would have looked just great. Listen everyone you may not have anymore money coming in for needed things. Before I go to Hawaii on your dime, I just wanted to let you know where I stand.

gracepmc January 7, 2014 at 3:34 pm

Anybody have a link to which Republicans voted for unemployment extension with no avenue to pay for it? Thx

Julie Brueckheimer January 7, 2014 at 3:37 pm

Portman of OH, Heller of NV, Ayotte of NH, Coats of IN, Collins of ME, and Murkowski of AK.

Julie Brueckheimer January 7, 2014 at 3:35 pm

Karl Rove and Brit Hume are rightly saying that Obama’s call for yet another extension of long term unemployment benefits is his admission of defeat, but who really pays attention to what they say? The Congressional Republicans don’t send a loud and clear message out on that, and furthermore they always manage to drum up a few people to help Harry Reid out. It’s always the same ones too–Ayotte, Collins, Murkowski, Portman. They should just declare themselves Democrats and be done with it.

I don’t feel as sanguine about the issue as you do, Keith. Now the Senate Republicans have helped pass a bill which does not even ask for a quid pro quo. When it gets to the House where Boehner is supposed to be holding out for paying for the extension, they will either squeeze it out of the people they have been squeezing already (the so-called middle class, the vets, the elderly) or they will cave as they did during the government shutdown. The Republicans are completely ineffectual before Obama and the Democrats.

mark schlender January 8, 2014 at 6:58 am

Can the Republicans not come up with a way to show $6.5 Billion of silly spending that the president can give up in order to help these Americans….. and make the President look like the unreasonable one.

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