The Washington Independent
The Washington Independent

Brown Offers Deficit-Neutral Unemployment Benefits Extension Bill

This morning, Sen. Scott Brown (R-Mass.) said he will introduce a deficit-neutral version of the jobs bill. His Fiscally Responsible Relief for Our States Act

Tyrese Griffin
News
Last updated: Jul 31, 2020 | Jun 30, 2010

This morning, Sen. Scott Brown (R-Mass.) said he will introduce a deficit-neutral version of the jobs bill. His Fiscally Responsible Relief for Our States Act of 2010 does not raise taxes or expand the national debt, and instead borrows funds from the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, last year’s stimulus bill, to pay for federally extended unemployment insurance benefits and other measures.

Brown says:

Last week, I opposed a big spending bill because it called for nearly $60 billion in tax increases and more than $33 billion deficit spending. I said no to this bill because the federal government is clearly addicted to debt and wants to raise taxes on Americans during a time when we can least afford it. This bill was defeated in a bipartisan manner.

There are some programs in that legislation that are important to Massachusetts during this economic crisis — the summer jobs program for young people, unemployment insurance extensions for those still looking for work in this tough economy, as well as additional assistance to the states, known as FMAP — but we need to find a way to pay for them.

My compromise bill uses unspent stimulus funds and cuts wasteful and unnecessary spending in other areas to pay for these important programs. Believe it or not, there is about $37 billion in stimulus money just sitting in a Washington slush fund when it should be put to good use immediately.

While my bill pays for additional FMAP assistance for one more year, this phase-down provides states an opportunity to get their fiscal houses in order — but also makes it clear that they can no longer pass the buck to the federal government, which has budgetary problems of its own.

Of course, state budget problems are very different from federal budget problems. The federal government can run deficits. It can also print money. States can do neither. This has ginned up renewed calls to federalize Medicaid — both to avoid rewarding fiscally irresponsible states by bailing their Medicaid funds out, and to ensure that the program, which offers health care coverage to the poor, is properly and consistently funded.

Additionally, taking the funds from the stimulus … well, takes funds from the stimulus. At a time when many mainstream economists believe the economy needs more juice in the form of government spending, Brown is essentially suggesting holding spending level rather than increasing it. This will not sit well with Democrats. But it is now the Republican party line.

Tyrese Griffin | Tyrese started her education in the performing arts at the prestigious Alexander Hamilton Academy in Los Angeles. She returned to civilian life after serving in the United States Army as a tracked vehicle operator, and started writing short stories and screenplays, as well as directing short films and music videos. She has published six novels, which have sold over 200,000 copies, as well as audiobooks and short stories for anthologies, and has earned several awards.

Related

$1.89 billion given to states to fight HIV

The federal government Monday announced more than $1.89 billion in funding to states to fight the HIV epidemic with access to care and with more cash for the failing AIDS Drug Assistance Program. According to an HHS press release , $813 million of that money will go directly to the ADAP programming. An additional $8,386,340 will be issued as a supplement to 36 states and territories currently facing a litany of unmet needs and access issues.

Army Data Shows Constraints on Troop Increase Potential

If President Obama orders an additional 30,000 to 40,000 troops to Afghanistan, he will be deploying practically every available U.S. Army brigade to war, leaving few units in reserve in case of an unforeseen emergency and further stressing a force that has seen repeated combat deployments since 2002.

1. Brian Schweitzer

As governor of Montana, Schweitzer doesn’t represent one of the most highly populated, high-profile electoral states in the country. But this

$1.3 Million for Brown

The GOP’s candidate in the Massachusetts special election raised more than one million dollars -- double the goal -- in a 24-hour moneybomb on the Ron Paul

$1.3 trillion in federal spending unaccounted for, report finds

Despite calls for independent bodies to keep government accountable, the Sunlight Foundation’s most recent Clearspending report has found the federal

#1 in Conspiracy Theories

Andrew Young’s tell-all biography of John Edwards, hitting shelves next week, is surging in one Amazon.com category in particular. #1 in Conspiracy

1 Brigade and 1 Battalion

ISTANBUL – It’s 10 p.m. in the lowest level of the Istanbul airport. In 20 minutes I’ll be allowed to board my plane to Kabul, bringing me to the

$1 Million for Toomey

Pat Toomey, the former Club for Growth president and leading Republican candidate in Pennsylvania’s 2010 Senate race, has announced a $1 million haul in the

1. Lindsey Graham

Sen. Graham (R-S.C.) is typically regarded as a reliable vote for his party, but he took the bold step of breaking with his fellow Republicans to join Kerry

Bachmann uncomfortable over earmarks ban

Republicans appear to have boxed themselves into a corner with their portrayal of earmarks as wasteful spending, as many of them have backed a moratorium on

Troubled mine holds hope for U.S. rare earth industry

China currently controls 97 percent of the world’s rare earth production. The Mountain Pass Mine could change that -- if it can overcome serious environmental concerns.

© Copyright 2021 The Washington Independent All Rights Reserved

Terms & Privacy | twi.news@washingtonindependent.com