Club for Growth issues key-vote warning on Reid-Heller unemployment extension vote

posted at 10:41 am on January 6, 2014 by Ed Morrissey

The thorny issue of how to deal with the chronic joblessness in the US will provide a dramatic moment this week on Capitol Hill. A bipartisan compromise between Nevada’s two Senators, Republican Dean Heller and Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, will test GOP resolve on cutting off extended benefits after more than four years of extensions:

Senate Majority LeaderHarry Reid said Sunday that he was hopeful that five Republican senators would join Democrats this week to revive a program of expanded benefits for the long-term unemployed.

But he could name only one GOP senator who was prepared to cross party lines: Dean Heller of Nevada, who is co-sponsoring the legislation.

“Dean Heller is not some maverick that is out spewing socialism,” Mr. Reid said on CBS’s “Face the Nation.” “He is really a conservative person.… Hopefully we can get four more Republicans.”

The expanded benefits program lapsed last month. The Senate could vote as soon as Monday on a plan to revive it for three months. Even if supporters find the 60 Senate votes needed to overcome a procedural hurdle, it is unclear that the House would take up the measure.

Nearly five million long-term unemployed people will lose benefits over the course of the year unless Congress revives the program, said Gene Sperling, director of the White House’s National Economic Council.

The 26-week period of benefits is not at issue in this debate. The budget compromise passed last month that was crafted by Paul Ryan and Patty Murray did not include an extension of the 99-week coverage added after the Great Recession, which was considered at the time a stop-gap measure intended as a bridge until the Democrats’ stimulus package revived job creation. When the Great Recession ended, the civilian workforce participation rate was 65.7%, but it dropped to a 36-year low of 62.8% in November before rising slightly to December’s 63.0%.

How long will taxpayers and states be expected to fund the extended UI program? Aloysius Hogan of the Competitive Enterprise Institute says it’s already been too long in a USA Today column:

Unemployment insurance extensions in the past five years have kept at least 600,000 people out of the labor force, because people tend to ride a gravy train. That’s the conclusion of analyses by the Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco and the National Bureau of Economic Research, respectively. The evidence is clear: Another extension of unemployment insurance would do more harm than good.

Even the recently departed chairman of the White House Council of Economic Advisers, Alan Krueger, once understood the perverse incentives at play. Before working for the Obama administration, two of Krueger’s own analyses revealed that paying people not to work actually increases the incentive not to work. And that means more time spent unemployed.

Perverse incentives impact states, as well. Extended unemployment benefits are disproportionately transferred to high-unionization, high-unemployment states such as California, Michigan, Illinois, New York and Massachusetts. And that amounts to political cronyism. Politicians in those heavily Democratic states could be pals of the current administration, but those states have a record of failure in putting people to work.

The Club for Growth announced today that they would key-vote the cloture call:

The Club for Growth urges all Senators to vote “NO” on the motion to proceed to the Heller-Reed plan (S. 1845) to extend unemployment benefits for three months with no spending offset. Consideration of the bill will likely be today. The vote will be included in the Club’s 2014 Congressional Scorecard.

Congress should end the federal unemployment insurance program and return the authority back to the states, which already have programs in place. Absent this, Congress should pay for this extension by cutting spending elsewhere in the budget. After six years, an extension can no longer be called an “emergency” with any credibility. There is plenty of waste in the federal budget from which to find an offset.

Our Congressional Scorecard for the 113th Congress provides a comprehensive rating of how well or how poorly each member of Congress supports pro-growth, free-market policies and will be distributed to our members and to the public.

This leaves Republicans in a tight spot, though, especially in an election year in which they want to focus on the damage done to the middle class by ObamaCare. The federal benefit of 26 weeks should be more than sufficient in a healthy economy, but Republicans have been arguing (with very good reason) that a workforce ratio not seen since the Carter administration is anything but healthy, at least in terms of job creation. The GOP blames Obamanomics, the stimulus in particular, and especially ObamaCare as especially damaging to the middle class, but it’s going to be difficult to shift from that and explain why the economy is good enough to end the “temporary” extension.

The White House wants to make “income inequality” the issue for 2014, and they will point to any vote that defunds UI as part of a “war on the poor.” Republicans have countered that they will support another extension if Democrats offer a pay-for that doesn’t borrow money from the future or raise taxes any further — in other words, a balancing budget cut.Note well that the Club for Growth allows for that kind of compromise by endorsing (as a fallback) a spending-offset compromise. That demonstrates that they understand the political tightrope Republicans will have to walk on this issue.


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The thorny issue of how to deal with the chronic joblessness in the US

Oh, oh, oh I know! *raises hand* Amnesty.

magicbeans on January 6, 2014 at 10:46 AM

I have the utmost confidence that Lisa Merconstipowski will vote the right way.

steebo77 on January 6, 2014 at 10:49 AM

Before working for the Obama administration, two of Krueger’s own analyses revealed that paying people not to work actually increases the incentive not to work

who knew,

phatfawzi on January 6, 2014 at 10:51 AM

This leaves Republicans in a tight spot, though, especially in an election year in which they want to focus on the damage done to the middle class by ObamaCare.

Well, given that the surrender weasels caved on the shutdown “because the focus should be on Obamacare.” They trashed military retirees and extended tax credits for illegals under Ryan/Murray because “averting shutdown and focusing on Obamacare” was the winning political strategy.

Given this reasoning, shouldn’t the GOP just agree to whatever the hell the Dems want except when it comes from Obamacare?

The fact of the matter is that both Dems and Republicans say that unemployment benefits shouldn’t be unlimited in duration. It is a matter of just how many weeks is “enough.” The GOP should make them give up a number. If not 26 weeks, just how many weeks is “enough” of a benefit.

Happy Nomad on January 6, 2014 at 10:53 AM

Dean Heller …is really a conservative person.…

This is the opening statement of a proof by contradiction.

Fenris on January 6, 2014 at 10:53 AM

it’s funny how were always threatened with social security not going to be funded after a certain time but this issue and welfare never run out of money.

phatfawzi on January 6, 2014 at 10:54 AM

This leaves Republicans in a tight spot, though, especially in an election year in which they want to focus on the damage done to the middle class by ObamaCare.

That’s a strawman and it should be burnt to the ground.

People want to work. For the most part, they don’t want to be paid not to.

Extended unemployment payments ultimately provide a disincentive to work. That’s a proven fact.

Notwithstanding that Mr. Obama and Democrats have wrecked our economy and year-after-year spent us into a recession, we should not contribute to the disaster.

It is time we put people back to work and “walked-the-walk”.

Reid and Democrats desperately need this more than Republicans. It is why he’s pushed Heller to sell out on the issue.

Marcus Traianus on January 6, 2014 at 10:56 AM

All she had to do was log onto a website once per week.

blink on January 6, 2014 at 10:47 AM

Where she probably had to lie about “looking” for work.

Happy Nomad on January 6, 2014 at 10:56 AM

According the Obama Regime and the mainstream media, I thought the economy was recovering and employment was surging.

So why do we need to extend UE benefits again?

DRayRaven on January 6, 2014 at 10:57 AM

We need input from people who are actually on unemployment and welfare to provide a man on the street feel to this problem, like the guy at the soup kitchen who humbly gathered his food and then snapped a pic of the First Lady serving the food with his sparkling new I-Phone.

Bishop on January 6, 2014 at 10:59 AM

did not include an extension of the 99-week coverage added after the Great Recession, which was considered at the time a stop-gap measure intended as a bridge until the Democrats’ stimulus package revived job creation.

 
We’ve been repeating “Stimulus” spending each year since the first one. It’s why Reid won’t pass a budget:
 
http://hotair.com/archives/2013/07/18/ouch-detroit-files-for-biggest-municipal-bankruptcy-in-u-s-history/comment-page-3/#comment-7178264
 
It’s time to try something new.

rogerb on January 6, 2014 at 11:01 AM

$5,000,000,000,000+ in the last five years, btw.

rogerb on January 6, 2014 at 11:04 AM

We need input from people who are actually on unemployment and welfare to provide a man on the street feel to this problem, like the guy at the soup kitchen who humbly gathered his food and then snapped a pic of the First Lady serving the food with his sparkling new I-Phone.

Bishop on January 6, 2014 at 10:59 AM

WaPo had one of those a couple weeks ago. The woman had been laid off from a receptionist job at a realtor’s office. Apparently, that’s such a technical job that a year of looking hasn’t netted her a single job offer (her claim). Something tells me that she wasn’t working all that hard of finding a new job. So now, she says that her benefits being cut off will mean she and her adult son (who shares an apartment with her) will be out on the street. Boo Hoo.

Happy Nomad on January 6, 2014 at 11:05 AM

Sounds to me like Nevada needs more jobs since they are the only ones pushing this.

Tater Salad on January 6, 2014 at 11:06 AM

According the Obama Regime and the mainstream media, I thought the economy was recovering and employment was surging.

So why do we need to extend UE benefits again?

DRayRaven on January 6, 2014 at 10:57 AM

Because Dems know that they’ll have voter loyalty from the LIVs only so long as they get “free stuff.”

Happy Nomad on January 6, 2014 at 11:06 AM

Why vote gop if they don’t extend benefits?
-candy Crowley

cmsinaz on January 6, 2014 at 11:07 AM

Ed….add that candy Crowley vid from newsbusters

cmsinaz on January 6, 2014 at 11:09 AM

Why vote gop if they don’t extend benefits?
-candy Crowley

cmsinaz on January 6, 2014 at 11:07 AM

There’s an easy GOP answer to that one……

The GOP is against extending benefits because it is time to stop saddling our children with debt to hide the fact that the adminstration has failed to create jobs or reduce unemployment.

Happy Nomad on January 6, 2014 at 11:13 AM

WaPo had one of those a couple weeks ago. The woman had been laid off from a receptionist job at a realtor’s office. Apparently, that’s such a technical job that a year of looking hasn’t netted her a single job offer (her claim). Something tells me that she wasn’t working all that hard of finding a new job. So now, she says that her benefits being cut off will mean she and her adult son (who shares an apartment with her) will be out on the street. Boo Hoo.

Happy Nomad on January 6, 2014 at 11:05 AM

I should try to interview her, she might be one of the Chicago Welfare Road Warriors who fly up to MPLS every month to collect their Minnesota-issued checks.

Nothing brings a tear of humble joy to my eye quite like knowing I get raped on my taxes to help some poor schlub from Chicago pay for his gas money to keep his new Audi running.

Bishop on January 6, 2014 at 11:16 AM

*pops popcorn* Here comes another GOP civil war!

libfreeordie on January 6, 2014 at 11:17 AM

HN…good one but the lsm will blame the gop instead of this administration

cmsinaz on January 6, 2014 at 11:22 AM

Nothing brings a tear of humble joy to my eye quite like knowing I get raped on my taxes to help some poor schlub from Chicago pay for his gas money to keep his new Audi running.

Bishop on January 6, 2014 at 11:16 AM

The woman in the story was living in Baltimore, so she already was sucking at the golden teat of socialism.

You should be proud that your state government is so generous they don’t like, you know, try to tamp down on welfare fraud.

Happy Nomad on January 6, 2014 at 11:22 AM

I should try to interview her, she might be one of the Chicago Welfare Road Warriors who fly up to MPLS every month to collect their Minnesota-issued checks.

Nothing brings a tear of humble joy to my eye quite like knowing I get raped on my taxes to help some poor schlub from Chicago pay for his gas money to keep his new Audi running.

Bishop on January 6, 2014 at 11:16 AM

Data vs. Your Insanity: http://www.theatlantic.com/business/archive/2013/12/this-chart-blows-up-the-myth-of-the-welfare-queen/282452/

libfreeordie on January 6, 2014 at 11:23 AM

HN…good one but the lsm will blame the gop instead of this administration

cmsinaz on January 6, 2014 at 11:22 AM

So what else is new? Hasn’t the GOP taken the blame for this kind of stuff for the last 70 years. Time to ignore the bait about “uncaring” Republicans and put the focus on the children being harmed by Democrats.

I mean, seriously, letting the unemployed have nearly TWO years on the public dole isn’t enough for Dems? How are they going to square this demand with the upcomind demand for amnesty? Doesn’t that kill jobs for the low-skilled folks who are sucking at the government teat?

Happy Nomad on January 6, 2014 at 11:26 AM

*pops popcorn* Here comes another GOP civil war!
 
libfreeordie on January 6, 2014 at 11:17 AM

 
+1.
 
Some people on here may not vote to support exponential increases in domestic spying or eagerly support the thousands of deaths from Obama’s expansion of imperialistic wars just because they want to talk about gay marriage.
 
You know. Actual morals and standards.

rogerb on January 6, 2014 at 11:27 AM

libfreeordie on January 6, 2014 at 11:23 AM

It’s going to be fun seeing your rat-eared leader shuck and jive about income inequality even as the middle class is attacked by higher taxes, higher health insurance, limited economic opportunity. Just so a bunch of worthless parasites don’t have to contribute to society or die of starvation.

Happy Nomad on January 6, 2014 at 11:28 AM

*pops popcorn* Here comes another GOP civil war!

libfreeordie on January 6, 2014 at 11:17 AM

Actually, latest polls show that GOP unity as at a recent high…

Midas on January 6, 2014 at 11:30 AM

That demonstrates that they understand the political tightrope Republicans will have to walk on this issue.

Republicans can’t walk a tightrope because are spineless. Name your issue, this is what happens:
1. republican politicians will oppose it
2. they will scream and holler for days, go on talk shows, etc
3. deadline nears, “crisis” looming
4. crisis “inevitable” (oh noes!)
5. last minute “talks” (phew!)
6. republicans cave but they will call it “compromise reached”
7. democrats get their way
8. republicans will go on CNN/MSNBC and will find a way to use the phrase “tea party extremists”

redzap on January 6, 2014 at 11:30 AM

Nothing brings a tear of humble joy to my eye quite like knowing I get raped on my taxes to help some poor schlub from Chicago pay for his gas money to keep his new Audi running.
 
Bishop on January 6, 2014 at 11:16 AM

 
Data vs. Your Insanity: http://www.theatlantic.com/business/archive/2013/12/this-chart-blows-up-the-myth-of-the-welfare-queen/282452/
 
libfreeordie on January 6, 2014 at 11:23 AM

 
You really ought to start reading your links, professor:
 

And surprise, surprise, households that rely on the safety net lead some pretty frugal lifestyles. On average, they spend $30,582 in a year, compared to $66,525 for families not on public assistance. Meanwhile, they spend a third less on food, half as much on housing, and 60 percent less on entertainment.

 
They manage to spend almost half as much total as non-welfare recipients, reach 66% of the non-welfare food budget, and they still manage to match 40% on entertainment spending.
 
Nicely done, professor.

rogerb on January 6, 2014 at 11:32 AM

Thanks for the link, btw.

rogerb on January 6, 2014 at 11:33 AM

I mean, seriously, letting the unemployed have nearly TWO years on the public dole isn’t enough for Dems?

eh…I believe they have provided the emergency 3-month extension 13 times so far. It needs to stop now no matter what. The economy is great. The oceans have stopped rising. This is as good as it gets.

DanMan on January 6, 2014 at 11:38 AM

and they still manage to match 40% on entertainment spending.

Nicely done, professor.

rogerb on January 6, 2014 at 11:32 AM

Go to any public housing complex and you will note almost every unit has a satellite dish on it. An enterprising budget hawk in office would note that and cut accordingly. No NSA needed.

DanMan on January 6, 2014 at 11:42 AM

Data vs. Your Insanity: http://www.theatlantic.com/business/archive/2013/12/this-chart-blows-up-the-myth-of-the-welfare-queen/282452/

libfreeordie on January 6, 2014 at 11:23 AM

Nice try but your own chart refutes itself in the remarks:

These figures, drawn from the 2011 Consumer Expenditure Survey, don’t capture all non-cash perks some low-income families get from the government, such as healthcare coverage through Medicaid. But they give you a sense of the kind of tight finances these families deal with.

So they pick and chose what was included in the chart. Try again.

Johnnyreb on January 6, 2014 at 11:42 AM

*pops popcorn* Here comes another GOP civil war!

libfreeordie on January 6, 2014 at 11:17 AM

You should show your gratitude better. The last one we threw ended the Democrats reign of slavery over you. You wouldn’t be free to be the crossdressing sicko you are today if it wasn’t for us..oh wait! LOL!

HotAirian on January 6, 2014 at 11:50 AM

And for those who missed possibly the funniest thread I’ve ever seen on hotair:
 

Also? Most murderers identify as Christians. Again, words mean things.
 
libfreeordie on December 19, 2013 at 10:09 AM

 

Shouldn’t the word “Christian” actually be used somewhere in the paper you cited?
 
rogerb on December 19, 2013 at 10:43 AM

 

I don’t have to prove that most Christians identify as murderers.
 
libfreeordie on December 19, 2013 at 10:56 AM

 

Seriously, do you have any explanation for thinking that the paper you quoted proved your claim to the point of writing “And scene”?
Seriously, do you simply toss “any old thing” out as proof of something in your classes?
 
blink on December 19, 2013 at 11:14 AM

 
The gag is that you all took time to read it…..
 
libfreeordie on December 19, 2013 at 11:15 AM

 
So, you cited the paper as a gag? You didn’t cite the paper because you stupidly thought it proved your claim?
 
Is this the best you can do?
 
blink on December 19, 2013 at 11:42 AM

 
http://hotair.com/archives/2013/12/18/duck-dynastys-phil-robertson-suspended-by-ae-for-comments-on-homosexuality/comment-page-8/#comment-7575981

rogerb on January 6, 2014 at 11:53 AM

They manage to spend almost half as much total as non-welfare recipients, reach 66% of the non-welfare food budget, and they still manage to match 40% on entertainment spending.

Nicely done, professor.

rogerb on January 6, 2014 at 11:32 AM

Are you completely and utterly insane? Here’s a notion, why don’t you try and cut out 44% of your food budget and see how your family does.

libfreeordie on January 6, 2014 at 12:05 PM

Meanwhile, they spend a third less on food, half as much on housing, and 60 percent less on entertainment.

 

They manage to spend almost half as much total as non-welfare recipients, reach 66% of the non-welfare food budget, and they still manage to match 40% on entertainment spending.
 
Nicely done, professor.
 
rogerb on January 6, 2014 at 11:32 AM

 
Are you completely and utterly insane? Here’s a notion, why don’t you try and cut out 44% of your food budget and see how your family does.
 
libfreeordie on January 6, 2014 at 12:05 PM

 
Math for non-science majors strikes again.

rogerb on January 6, 2014 at 12:15 PM

Data vs. Your Insanity: http://www.theatlantic.com/business/archive/2013/12/this-chart-blows-up-the-myth-of-the-welfare-queen/282452/

libfreeordie on January 6, 2014 at 11:23 AM

Notwithstanding that the chart comes from 2011 and we know that since then, millions more have been added to the rolls. This chart does nothing to refute anything. Liars..figures… some creative assembly. Even the footnotes readily admit that not all factors are included.

According to the BLS source document, on the last page:

The other expenses category is comprised of outlays on

alcoholic beverages

, cash contributions, education,

personal care

,
reading,

tobacco

, and miscellaneous expenses, such as funeral expenses, legal fees, and safe deposit box rental. For more
information, see Consumer Expenditure Survey, Glossary, Bureau of Labor Statistics, http://www.bls.gov/cex/csxgloss.htm.

Since BLS is using the average family size of 3.7, there is no way I can believe that a family on assistance only spends $1,780/year on “other”.

To wit, a pack-a-day habit comes out to $1,460 at $4/pack. $20/wk on booze comes out to $1040. After the aforementioned, they still have to purchase other “others”. Color me skeptical, not to mention plenty of evidence that some of these recipients are double/triple-dipping their benefits & EBTs. For the survey to be true, it would necessaily mean there isn’t a big market for cashing in foodstamps at 2 to 1 etc.

Try to find something better — if you can, but you’ll understand that I won’t hold my breath.

AH_C on January 6, 2014 at 12:24 PM

rogerb on January 6, 2014 at 11:53 AM

Here are a couple of student reviews of the professor that wrote the evaluation of religions mind set of “murder” that libby cited.

http://www.ratemyprofessors.com/ShowRatings.jsp?tid=820875

Mimzey on January 6, 2014 at 12:30 PM

Happy Nomad on January 6, 2014 at 11:26 AM

i hear ya…they continue to cave

cmsinaz on January 6, 2014 at 12:32 PM

Haven’t republicans figured out how this is supposed to work yet. They need to make lofty promises that will never happen and then pass an unemployment extension until 11/5/14. /

hopeful on January 6, 2014 at 12:45 PM

The 26-week period of benefits is not at issue in this debate. The budget compromise passed last month that was crafted by Paul Ryan and Patty Murray did not include an extension of the 99-week coverage added after the Great Recession, which was considered at the time a stop-gap measure intended as a bridge until the Democrats’ stimulus package revived job creation. When the Great Recession ended, the civilian workforce participation rate was 65.7%, but it dropped to a 36-year low of 62.8% in November before rising slightly to December’s 63.0%.

Actually the 99-week funemployment (subsequently cut to 73 weeks total) happened in June 2008, with an expansion just after the 2008 election, extended in early 2009, further expanded in late 2009, and extended/modified no less than 8 times since late 2009.

Steve Eggleston on January 6, 2014 at 12:55 PM

Well, given that the surrender weasels caved on the shutdown “because the focus should be on Obamacare.” They trashed military retirees and extended tax credits for illegals under Ryan/Murray because “averting shutdown and focusing on Obamacare” was the winning political strategy.

Given this reasoning, shouldn’t the GOP just agree to whatever the hell the Dems want except when it comes from Obamacare?

The fact of the matter is that both Dems and Republicans say that unemployment benefits shouldn’t be unlimited in duration. It is a matter of just how many weeks is “enough.” The GOP should make them give up a number. If not 26 weeks, just how many weeks is “enough” of a benefit.

Happy Nomad on January 6, 2014 at 10:53 AM

The funny (as a clown) thing is, El PRL has given their partners in the bipartisan Party-In-Government every single discretionary penny they asked for when they asked for it.

Steve Eggleston on January 6, 2014 at 12:58 PM

“…every single discretionary PlaceboCare penny….”

Steve Eggleston on January 6, 2014 at 1:00 PM

If the economy is so damned good as the Obama administration claims then why is the unemployment extension needed?

Wade on January 6, 2014 at 1:13 PM

Compromise: What are the d-cRAT extremists willing to GIVE-UP to fund their voting-buying, unnecessary, wasteful, harmful gift of taxpayer money to let people get unemployment money for an excessively long period (making them LESS EMPLOYABLE) – even in the OBOZO economy that THEY SAY is “good.”?

TeaPartyNation on January 6, 2014 at 1:48 PM