Congressman Wm. Lacy Clay (D) Missouri today urged GOP Senators, including Senator Kit Bond (R) Missouri, to act immediately to extend emergency unemployment benefits and pass an urgently needed jobs bill, both of which were approved by the U.S. House several weeks ago. The U.S House has repeatedly passed critical legislation that would create jobs, stimulate the economy and extend emergency unemployment benefits, only to have those acts stalled by GOP Senators.
"It is morally indefensible and economically foolish to block the extension of emergency unemployment benefits and passage of this critical jobs bill," said Congressman Clay. "This is about helping millions of Americans, including thousands right here in Missouri, to save their homes, feed their families and find a new job. I simply do not understand how Senator Bond and other GOP Senators can hold these innocent American families hostage because of partisan politics. I hope that they will search their consciences and just do the right thing."
Besides extending emergency unemployment benefits, the urgent legislation that Senate Republicans continue to block would create a $1 billion program to employ 350,000 young Americans and would also provide $2.5 billion in emergency assistance for needy families working in public and private sector jobs.
Additionally, $1 billion for the National Housing Trust Fund is being obstructed. When passed, it will provide local communities with urgently needed funds to stabilize neighborhoods hit hard by foreclosures, allowing them to convert vacant houses into safe, affordable rental homes for low-income families.
Other provisions in the House-passed jobs legislation that is being blocked by GOP Senators include:
* Tax cuts to put money back in the pockets of working families;
* Help to restore the flow of credit to enable small businesses to expand and hire new workers by extending small business loan programs;
* Expanded career training programs for Americans who are looking for work;
* Extended eligibility for unemployment insurance benefits for workers who have lost their jobs through no fault of their own.