• The Heritage Network
    • Resize:
    • A
    • A
    • A
  • Donate
  • The Senate Cloakroom: Oct. 26 – 30

    Senate Analysis –

    An extension of unemployment insurance benefits will occupy the Senate for most of the week. Not only is extending jobless benefits the wrong way to address the lack of jobs, but Senators are likely to attach more misguided policies – like an extension of the homebuyers tax credit – to the provision. It should be noted the Senate had planned on taking up some version of Obamacare this week. Another significant slip in the timetable is noteworthy, especially after the Senate failed to invoke cloture on the ‘doc fix’ early last week.

    Major Senate Floor Action –

    • Extending unemployment insurance benefits (HR 3548) is a top priority for the President and Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) has pledged to get the bill done next week after several unsuccessful attempts.
    • Several spending bills remain incomplete, including the Military Construction-VA appropriations bill (HR 3802) and the Commerce-Justice-Science appropriations bill (HR 2847) . The latter has been blocked by Reid, who does not want to consider an amendment by Senator David Vitter (R-LA) on whether or not illegal immigrants should identify their status in the upcoming census.

    Major Senate Committee Action –

    Posted in Obamacare, Ongoing Priorities [slideshow_deploy]

    21 Responses to The Senate Cloakroom: Oct. 26 – 30

    1. richard says:

      Once again, The heritage foundation has no clue!!!!! It is vital to the economy and the millions of Americans that this bill get passed quickly…………..

    2. Rob Land says:

      How long is all of this going to take? Are we in for another 2 weeks, a month or more before actually receiving benefits? We will all be homeless by then!

    3. Jack Jack, unemploye says:

      You're pigs.

    4. JH says:

      Extending unemployment benefits is the wrong way to address the lack of jobs, huh? We'd all love to hear your solution for the problem. Oh, you don't have one? Imagine that.

    5. Don/ California says:

      Heritage Foundation. I use to do contract work for you in Florida. You people are so blinded by your ideology that you cannot responsibly report on a serious issue in this country. Many honest , regular working Americans are hurting. A program (unemployment compensation) that most Americans have been paying into for years and now need assistance. Take off the blinders and recognize a serious situation. Contact as many congress people as possible before 10/27/09. Pass this Bill!

    6. Bob, Connecticut says:

      For each of us who are trying our best to find a job…Show Me The Money! And thank you Republicans for putting us in the mess we're in.

    7. Geri, Florida says:

      Extending unemployment benefits may be the wrong way to address the lack of jobs, but it's the only way to address the issues of those affected by the lack of jobs. Unemployment benefits are supposed to care for those who became umemployed through no fault of their own, not to fund every idiot who decides to quit their job. The fact that we or our family members became unemployed through no fault of their own in an economy where downsizing is the only way for millions of companies to survive only proves the reason why we are still unemployed. Recovery takes a long time, yet benefits run out quickly. Without the extensions and support of our government, we will be living in refugee camps and reverting to times that are way below what our country has grown to be.

      Stop running around bickering over who's more popular and who might or might not get a vote next election and start taking care of your own people in this country who need the help now more than ever. The same people who can help get this country moving in the right direction.

    8. Ed says:

      Workers paid into unemployment fund for years, some are decades. When comes the bad time, many companies laying off workers and let unemployment insurance fund pick up the slack. Now, the extension may add a patry $14 a year in additional cost to employers for each of those who laid off their workers and that cost, to those republicans senators, seems to take their constituient,s lunch away, without for a minute thinking that a small cost by comparison would save many American lives. When comes to argue about the cost, Why not think about those so called golden parachutes, contry club perks, fat serverance bonuses ….. were thown at their departing CEO's or top-brass cadets.

    9. Joe Anderson says:

      So typical. Ideology over reality at the expense of hundreds of thousands of Americans. I can't believe there is even opposition to this.

      Look, if you don't think unemployment is a worthwhile social policy, then try to get rid of it. Good luck by the way.

      But not now, when this is what people are relying on for their shelter and food. Your broken ideology has no place at this point. This is a simple, economically STRATEGIC plan. Don't confuse the two. You can try to enact your broad POLICIES once this mess is over.

      For now, people need to eat.

    10. Will says:

      I submitted a comment earlier today. Where did it go?

    11. Mark C San Francisco says:

      Predictably, the Heritage Foundation are on the wrong side of another issue. The economic devastation that many Americans are facing today is real, and happening outside your "think" tank. An article in today's NY Times reports on the ugly situation facing the older unemployed workers. Presently, if you're over forty and become unemployed…it's pretty much over. It is beyond mean spirited, for the infantile Republicans in the Senate to obstruct the extension of unemployment benefits. Here in California, the "official" unemployment rate is 12.2%, the real rate is closer to 20%. People have been losing their benefits since July. I spoke with the brothers at St. Anthony's foundation, who provide services for the poor, and the demand for their help has gone up over 500% in the last 18 months.

      Y'all should come out of your cubicles every once in a while and experience the real world, it'll it make you human.

    12. Gary B says:

      I am a conservative but Heritage is on the wrong side of the argument on this one. They can't gather support for true job creating measures such as tax credits, favorable tax-loss forward treatment of corporate losses, lower corporate and individual tax rates IF the people whose support they seek are down and out.

      Why is it that the ivory tower theoreticians and the pols in the Congress can't get out of their own way? Yeah, I don't like the funding mechanism but trying to pull unemployment extensions out of the Porkulus mess is a Pyrrhic victory at best. Not going to happen.

      All the comments above reflect the attitudes of people on Main Street, not "K" street. If Conservatives want to roll Obama and his ilk out of town in 2010 and 2012, they need to meet the needs of real people with real problems. Otherwise, we'll find someone who will.

    13. M.K. Carlson / Naper says:

      Eliminate unemployment insurance benefits? And what do you suggest, ask Rush Limbaugh for a loan?Just what is your plan to put money for food and shelter in people's pockets immediately. How about if Halliburton, Cheney, Bush and Company refund the money for the illegal incursion into Iraq? How about some of that DoD slush fund used for social needs instead?

    14. Alex, Miami says:

      Suffering means nothing to you people.

    15. Charles T. Averett, says:

      Saying no to HR 3548 from a comfortable, warm, cozy foundation location is no doubt difficult to do. However there are currently millions of us who are the victims of corporate mismanagement and greed. We have gone without unemployment benefits for three weeks now and it is likely that by the time any compassion for American citizens is shown a fourth and fifth week will have passed. To add to this injury the extension will not be retroactive. Do the people who oppose this extension understand the human translations involved? Tuitions will go unpaid, families will be evicted from their humble abodes, cars will be repossessed and American Citizens will go hungry, literally. We are asking for and deserve the same compassion given to the corporate citizens that wallow in our wealth, while we worry if $400 a week and change will resume. Shame on the Senate and shame on the Heritage Foundation. Either we commit to a free marketplace and let corporations like AIG and Citi fail or we quit the pretense of one and help all of our citizens when they are in need.

    16. Long Island, NY says:

      Obviously the men in power have no clue of what it is like not to have money, a job, or security. Oh yes, that's right we gave them their jobs. They have one. Why I'll never know .They are so busy taking bribes, having girlfriends, and lieing to the public, they forgot who put them thereand why to represent us. No retroactive benefits after what they have put us through…shame on you…no wonder foreigners have no use for you in power….you're a joke!!

    17. Newberg OR says:

      Restoring the economy and increasing jobs is seperate from unemployment insurance. Why the confusion?

    18. Mark Avidus says:

      Wow, 17 comments on an obscure blog deep in Heritiage's website and not a single person supports your policy. Not even other conservatives. Shouldn't that tell you something?

      You guys might be ivory tower ideologues but don't you think its wise to take a softer stance on an issue like unemployment? A good deal of your cohorts are out of work right now. They might remember what your policies were later on down the road and choose not to support you further.

      Taking this position makes no policy, practical or public relations sense. Basically, you guys are blowing it. Big time.

    19. Armand, Sactown says:

      At this point nobody's really listening to what these blowhards are saying. They're irrelevant, but they love being the anti-view.

    20. Tim Cox 262 Fifield says:

      Why is it that when a bill effects your pay or benifits you people in the Senate get right on it? and when it effects the millions of Americans who need the unemployment as soon as possible you people drag your feet and make the people who need it sweat and hope and pray that you people get off of your asses and vote this in!!! if most of us were from another country there would be no problem getting this passed!!!! and there would be no problem for us not to pay taxes for four years and still get the benifits that we would get if we paid taxes the first day we came to the USA, this is not fair to the working class!

    21. Pingback: The Senate Cloakroom: Nov. 2 – 6 | Conservative Principles Now

    Comments are subject to approval and moderation. We remind everyone that The Heritage Foundation promotes a civil society where ideas and debate flourish. Please be respectful of each other and the subjects of any criticism. While we may not always agree on policy, we should all agree that being appropriately informed is everyone's intention visiting this site. Profanity, lewdness, personal attacks, and other forms of incivility will not be tolerated. Please keep your thoughts brief and avoid ALL CAPS. While we respect your first amendment rights, we are obligated to our readers to maintain these standards. Thanks for joining the conversation.

    Big Government Is NOT the Answer

    Your tax dollars are being spent on programs that we really don't need.

    I Agree I Disagree ×

    Get Heritage In Your Inbox — FREE!

    Heritage Foundation e-mails keep you updated on the ongoing policy battles in Washington and around the country.