Apparently, president Obama realizes that he needs some GOP votes in order to even get some
form of unemployment extensions passed.
Remember, before the shit hit the fan in 2008, the usual amount of time you could collect unemployment was 28 weeks. Aslo remember, they extended Unemployment benefits to 99 weeks in hard hit areas after the job market collapsed in late 2008.
And don't Forget that it is the employers who pay into the unemployment funds to begin with. This is why congress has to act in order to replenish the funds that were depleted when the economy tanked. There is also the fact that business pays into the fund based on their unemplyment claims, the number of people they hire and also the line of work they are in. That is how the enemployment fund is normally funded.
So now they have extended the benefits by 45 weeks in states that have unemployment of 9% and above and extended by 35 weeks in all the other states. This is, again, over and above the normal 28 weeks of usual benefits.
I think what they are doing is reducing the amount of the long term benefits because of the first signs of recovery.
Unemployment was never looked at as more than giving people a bridge when they were separated from their jobs through no fault of their own.
I know it sounds cruel and it looks like president Obama and the Democrats in Congress are turning their backs on the unemployed but you have to realize that even if every Democrat in elected office in DC voted together they would still need some republican votes in order to pass these changes.
So you can blame the democrats if you want but I look at this as a victory of sorts because they were able to pry enough GOP support away from the republicans leadership to help out a whole lot of people who would be shit out of luck otherwise.
Do I like the way this is playing out? Hell no, but the political realities dictates that you, meaning the democrats, should get what they can while the getting is good.
If they don't play along, they will truly be seen as the bastards they are. Heading into an election with that rep is not a good thing.