xml:space="preserve">
xml:space="preserve">
Advertisement
Advertisement

4,700 Marylanders to Bunning: Thanks a lot, senator

Update:

Sen. Jim Bunning has dug in his heels. This morning he again blocked the Senate from extending benefits to the jobless.

Advertisement

According to the Associated Press, the Kentucky Republican objected to a request by Republican colleague Susan Collins of Maine to not only extend jobless benefits but to extend highway programs and prevent a big cut in Medicare payments to doctors. Doctors will be hit with a 21 percent cut in Medicare reimbursements.

Is this a political win for Republicans or  not?

Advertisement
Advertisement
Advertisement

The Senate failed to pass a short-term extension of unemployment compensation and a COBRA subsidy this past weekend, thanks to the action by a single Republican senator, Jim Bunning of Kentucky.

The Department of Labor this morning released state-by-state figures of the number of out-of-work individuals who will lose unemployment benefits because of Bunning's move. In Maryland, 4,700 fewer unemployed workers won't be eligible for unemployment benefits for the week ending March 13.

The Labor Department says nationwide 400,000 Americans will lose unemployment benefits during the first weeks in March, and by May nearly 3 million will be left without benefits. On top of that, about a half-million of workers who lost jobs won't receive the subsidy to help them pay for insurance under COBRA.

Bunning's argument is that Congress hasn't paid for the extension of benefits, which is why he blocked the legislation. In Kentucky, 4,300 unemployed workers will no longer receive unemployment benefits at the end of next week. Bunning is not running for re-election.

So, what do you think? Is he fiscally responsible? Or, is he using an arcane senate procedure to hurt vulnerable Americans?

Recommended on Baltimore Sun

Advertisement
Advertisement
Advertisement
Advertisement
Advertisement
Advertisement