Wednesday, September 28, 2011

At it Again

While we were all focused on the Death Penalty case of Troy Lewis last week, the Republicans and the Tea Party attempted to shut the government down again and hold it hostage...Yes they did?  Most of us, myself included..Weren't even aware...What is with these guys?

Senate leaders announced on Monday afternoon that they have reached an agreement to keep the government running.(Well Thank God for that!)

The new resolution funds the federal government through Nov. 18, including $2.65 billion for FEMA that the agency can start using on Saturday. The new amount reduces $1 billion from the House's proposed figure, instead of offsetting it with cuts to a Department on Energy lending program to support energy-efficient cars. Democrats agreed to the reduced amount in light of FEMA's announcement earlier in the day that it could stretch its current funding to last through Friday.

Although the deal still needs approval in the House, the Senate is hoping the measure will avert a government shutdown.

Don't get too comfortable, Threats of a government shutdown are still in play, as the House and Senate butt heads over the federal budget.

Government agency funding is set to expire on Friday, and last week the Republican-controlled House passed its bill to extend spending and provide additional money for disaster relief through the Federal Emergency Management Agency.

The agency has nearly depleted its resources after this year's string of hurricanes, tornadoes, tropical storms and wildfires. But the bill's $3.65 billion for FEMA has a catch -- the demand that it be offset by spending cuts elsewhere in the budget. They found $1.5 billion in savings, for example, through an Energy Department program that makes loans to car companies for manufacturing energy-efficient cars.

Dismayed Democrats say that requiring offsets for emergency aid has never been done in the past -- and it's not a precedent they want to set. The Senate is preparing to vote on a measure providing $3.65 billion to FEMA without the spending cuts stipulated in the House bill. The measure is a compromise from an earlier Senate bill that had requested $7 billion for emergency relief.

If the two sides don't reach an agreement, FEMA is close to running out of money this week. The rest of the government would shut down by October.

Represenative William Lacy Clay (Democrat, Mo.) said , and I agree- "It's outrageous that the Republican Tea Party has decided to hold disaster relief for thousands of Americans hostage while they threaten to shut down the government for no good reason,"

These guys will stop at nothing, just to make President Obama look bad and to get back the White House..They are willing to let the country go over the cliff, both literally and figurtively...I'm just shaking my head..

He went on to say -""We come to D.C. to do the people's business, not to engage in bad political theater."

The danger of putting emergency aid on the line is close to home for Represenative Clay, who saw tornadoes rip through his Missouri district last spring and cause extreme damage to other parts of his state.

"FEMA is essential to helping local communities get back on their feet," he said. "In Joplin, Missouri, we had a once-in-a-lifetime disaster -- 165 people dead, more than 1,000 injuries and 8,000 structures destroyed. No local or state government is prepared to handle something like that. That's why we have FEMA, and that's why we should never politicize disaster recovery funding."

And yet...this is what House and Senate Republicans and Tea Party folks are continually doing with this latest stunt.

Rep. Terri Sewell (Democrat-Ala.) likewise finds the House bill irresponsible. She represents an Alabama district that was also struck by tornadoes that killed more than 200 people in the state last spring. The Department of Energy, she further pointed out, says that the Advanced Technology Vehicle Manufacturing loan program on the chopping block has created at least 38,000 permanent jobs and 4,000 constructing jobs over the past two years.

"We should not have to choose between protecting thousands of jobs and ensuring that families have the necessary resources to rebuild and recover when a major disaster strikes," said Sewell. "I think it's wrong to try and balance the budget on the backs of people who have had their lives destroyed by natural disasters."

Republicans Like Eric "Hedge Fund Baby" Cantor doesn't feel the same!

Although House Republicans argue that it makes good, deficit-trimming sense to offset funding for emergency aid,Represenative Clay isn't buying their stated concern over fiscal responsibility.

"What is fiscally irresponsible is funding two wars to the tune of $1.2 trillion, and a Medicare Prescription Drug Part D benefit, on a credit card," said Represenative Clay. "What is fiscally irresponsible is giving two tax breaks to millionaires and billionaires without paying for them. Now, all of a sudden, they have this premonition that they want to be fiscally responsible? Where were they for the last decade?" (Thank You..It's what I've been saying since I started this blog.)

Represenative Clay continued that Republicans have become too accustomed to using political brinkmanship in negotiations. "The more we compromise, the fewer jobs we create," he said. "We need to stop with the compromising, and stop with the false bars that they raise."

 Both Clay and Sewell stopped short, however, of advocating for a government shutdown just to show Republicans the economic and political consequences. Both say they are prepared to work on figuring out a solution that keeps the country functioning. Good Luck with that!

"We shouldn't fall prey to the same type of obstructionist politics, holding the needs of the American people hostage for political gain," said Sewell. "I look forward to working with my colleagues to seek a resolution to this matter that will include not having to shut down the government."

If Americans can't see through this now (and chances are, most aren't even aware of it) then I don't know what it will take to make people see...

For those of you still struggling with whether to take the Republicans serious..I ask you..Where is the patriotism in this?


Don said...

Not as versed in Politics, not nearly understand everything read in just a short amount of time but might I add that it's very possible the GOP will stoop so low as to lower the boom on America, all in the name of electing Republican POTUS.

Politics, at its finest.

Arlene said...

Keith, these folks are relentless. They stay up late figuring out how to thwart the efforts of hardworking people. I'm amazed that the folks who say they believe in the power and majesty of God and the world He made have no desire to help His creation. Not a human or the planet itself. I just remind myself regularly that the battle has been fought and the victory has been won. I take every opportunity to tell the good news because flesh, especially not teaparty flesh, won't save us. (By flesh I mean humans.)


"Mommy, can I go to Timmy's blog and play?"

Click on image to enlarge for reading

Click on image to enlarge for reading

Click on image to enlarge for reading