- Rep. Tim Murphy: GOP knew HealthCare.gov would be an ‘unmitigated disaster’
- Planned Parenthood rebrands ‘pro-choice’ as ‘women’s health’
- U.S. attorney warns Cuomo not to interfere with anti-corruption probes
- Investigators reach Ukraine jet crash site
- Ohio gives Obama a thumbs down; Hillary Clinton tops GOP all-stars: poll
- Jesse Ventura suggests suit not over; HarperCollins could be next
- ‘No American is proud’ of certain CIA tactics: State Department
- Drug-filled drone crash outside S.C. prison sends police on alert
- GOP to Obama: Take your ‘golf cap off’ and get down to coal country
- Hamas cleric tells Jews: ‘We will exterminate you’
House Democrats trying to force unemployment insurance vote
Question of the Day
House Democrats will use a parliamentary tactic Wednesday to try to force a vote to renew unemployment benefits, but Republicans say it’s just a “futile” attempt to seem relevant in an election year.
Rep. Brad Schneider, Illinois Democrat, will file a discharge petition on Wednesday to force a vote on an unpaid-for extension through the end of the year. If the majority of members sign the petition, the House would have to bring the bill to the floor for a final vote.
“Failing to extend unemployment insurance, a critical lifeline for many of our families, is shortsighted and hurts our communities and businesses,” Mr. Schneider said. “If my colleagues want to vote against the extension, I respect their right to disagree; but failing to even allow a vote goes against the very progress that families and our constituents demand.”
The federal benefits for the long-term unemployed, which would have kicked in when state benefits ran out, expired Dec. 28.
More than 2 million people are now living without the benefits, which averaged about $300 a week, and Democrats have told stories of people losing their homes or struggling to pay bills, casting Republicans as the bad guys who see the unemployed as lazy and unmotivated.
But a GOP leadership aide said the discharge petition is just a political move by Democrats as the midterm elections approach, not a real effort to help the unemployed.
“This pointless discharge petition is a futile effort to make House Democrats feel relevant as the White House and Senate Democrats push an election year agenda aimed at mobilizing their base — not doing what’s best for the American people,” the aide said.
While it will be difficult if not impossible to clear the 218 signature hurdle, it’s the best chance Democrats have to get a vote on the issue. Speaker John A. Boehner, Ohio Republican, repeated that he would only consider a bill that is both completely paid for and includes job creation measures.
“The speaker told the White House before Christmas what it would take to pass another extension: It must be fiscally responsible and include something to help create more private sector jobs. Washington Democrats have not come up with any such plan,” said Michael Steel, a spokesman for Mr. Boehner.
© Copyright 2014 The Washington Times, LLC. Click here for reprint permission.
About the Author
Jacqueline Klimas covers Capitol Hill for The Washington Times. She can be reached at email@example.com.
- House passes VA reform compromise
- Senate bill quadruples fines for colleges that stay silent on sexual assault
- Rep. Jeff Miller: 'Ain't no leash for VA'
- Newly confirmed VA chief greeted with lawsuit over military sex assault treatment
- Robert McDonald confirmed as VA secretary
Latest Blog Entries
- Miss. GOP chair: Huckabee distracting from GOP's reasonable pro-life stance
- Commerce Secretary 'optimistic' about U.S.'s economic standing worldwide
- Less than half of registered voters would re-elect their congressman, poll finds
- Half of registered voters in Va. would re-elect Sen. Mark Warner
- 2013 was second most polarizing year of Obama's presidency
TWT Video Picks
By Ted Cruz
Israel saves its enemies; Hamas endangers its friends
- Al Gore's climate-changers at EPA hearings foiled by cool temperatures
- Geraldo Rivera: Matt Drudge 'doing his best to stir up a civil war'
- Chicken pox outbreak puts illegal immigrant facility on lockdown
- NAPOLITANO: Is the president incompetent or lawless?
- GOP report sees ties between rich donors, green 'nonprofits'
- House votes to sue President Obama over claims of presidential power
- Lois Lerner hated conservatives, new emails show
- EDITORIAL: The real Lois Lerner exposed in newly released emails
- CRUZ: A tale of two hospitals: One in Israel, one in Gaza
- Catholic League slams Obama: 'Do Christian lives mean so little to you?'
Obama's biggest White House 'fails'
Celebrities turned politicians
Athletes turned actors
20 gadgets that changed the world