Got an e-mail at nearly midnight last night from Jim Manley, senior spokesman for Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-NV. He takes strong exception to assertions made my Sen. Bunning's spokesman - that Bunning has voted for unemployment insurance benefits only when they've been paid fo. NOT TRUE, says Manley, and he sent his proof along, too. Here's what he sent, verbatim:
Bunning’s spokesman is not correct. Bunning has supported extending the UI with no offsets at least twice. Bullets below.
Bunning Has Voted Extensions Of Unemployment With No Offsets In The Past At Least Twice. Bunning voted for the fiscal 2008 war supplemental bill, which extended unemployment insurance benefits for 13 weeks. Bunning also supported ending debate and didn’t object to the voice vote of a measure to extend unemployment benefits for an additional seven weeks for workers who had exhausted their current compensation by March 31, 2009. The bill also extended benefits for an additional 13 weeks, or half the duration of regular unemployment compensation, for workers in states with unemployment rates of 6 percent or higher. These extensions did not have budget offsets. [Senate Vote 162, HR 2642, 6/26/08; Senate Vote 214, HR 6867, 11/20/08; Cleared by voice, 11/20/08] Objecting To Extending Unemployment Benefits Part Of Republican Pattern. The last time the Senate extended unemployment, Republicans objected three times, with Kyl objecting once and McConnell objecting twice. The extension of those unemployment insurance benefits was completely paid for “by extending the Federal Unemployment Tax through June 30, 2011.” [Congressional Record, 10/8/09, 10/26/09, 10/29/09; Senate Finance Committee, 10/8/09] ➢ Republicans Wanted Votes On ACORN, E-Verify On Last UI Extension.McConnell objected to passing the unemployment benefits.