Senate Shoots Down Efforts to Offset Unemployment Benefits
Sen. Tom Coburn (R-Okla.) made headlines a few weeks back when he killed the Democrats’ hopes of passing an unemployment benefits extension before the arrival of the deadline to file for new tiers, which came and went on April 5.
The Oklahoma Republican — known not endearingly as “Dr. No” — has insisted that the new costs be offset with spending cuts elsewhere in the budget. Democrats, on the other hand, want to tack the costs onto the deficit.
Today, Coburn has been at it again, offering two separate amendments that would have forced Democrats to offset the new spending. Both were shot down, but they did accomplish one thing: They’ve stalled the passage of a bill that could be helping hundreds of thousands of unemployed workers weather the jobs crisis, thereby keeping the Democrats from tackling other priorities.