Are Republicans willing to let some Americans starve? There are well over a million Americans who rely on unemployment benefits to help feed their families and keep a roof over their heads. The keyword is “help.” Those who have been on unemployment will attest to it being impossible to live off of unemployment benefits and sustain a comfortable lifestyle. Recipients of unemployment were most likely laid off due to the downsizing and cut backs of their former place of employment. Once they apply for unemployment, this also means downsizing and cutting way back on basic living for many. Contrary to what some Republicans might believe, unemployment benefits provides assistance in the interim of finding employment so that families will have their basic needs covered such as eating a meal and keeping their heat on during the winter.
It is not enough money to live solely on. Some conservative groups believe continuing to provide unemployment benefits is an incentive to the unemployed to remain unemployed. Many Americans want to find a job and end their day knowing they worked hard for a paycheck to care for their families. The Senate eliminating unemployment benefits to many long-term unemployed Americans leaves them with absolutely nothing to take for their families.
ABC News reported the Senate was one vote short of granting an extension to the millions of unemployed Americans in need. The request to extend unemployment benefits for three months to the many Americans still unable to find employment during a down economy was denied. Four Republicans joined forces with the Democrats to grant the extensions. 60 votes were needed and one Republican held out. The report went onto to say that Democrats knew their efforts would fail placing blame on the Republican party for having no interest in returning the flow of unemployment checks. According to CNN 1.7 million long-term unemployed who have been cut off from receiving benefits. Many are asking why.
The Republicans only answer is the deficit. The Democrats offered a compromise that would cost $6 billion for three months by increased employment contribution to pension programs. Reportedly the Republicans response to that was to increase military cost-of-living payments. As Democrats and Republicans continue to battle offering amendment after amendment, over a million American families are suffering.
Both parties are pointing the finger at the other for the state of the economy. President Obama searches for ways to create more jobs, so that more Americans can find employment. Some Republicans believe the only answer to end unemployment is for President Obama to find 1.7 million people jobs. The question burning in the 1.7 million long-term unemployed is until more jobs are created, what are they to do in the meantime to survive.
More and more people are starting home-based businesses taking their last dime to invest in their own rescue. Such companies as 5LINX, Mary Kay, Herbal Life, and the list goes on are experiencing an increase in growth during a down economy. These companies were once looked upon by most as side businesses that many would treat as a hobby for some additional play money. Many Americans believe they have run out of options. As the homeless rate increases as well as crime and drug addiction due to desperation and stress, Democrats and four Republicans search with urgency for a life jacket or a safety net to save the sinking 1.7 million people who helped to build this country to what it is today. The fight continues to save Americans from starvation. The fight also continues to…“let them eat cake.”
Editorial By Meleika Gardner