Texas Governor Rick Perry Does Not Want Fed Unemployment Comp Money

Another Republican governor does not want the money for his state's unemployed -- this time it is Texas Governor Rick Perry:

Gov. Rick Perry will announce today that he is blocking the state from accepting $550 million for expanded unemployment benefits as part of the federal stimulus package. With an upscale Houston hardware store as his backdrop, he will paint the expansion as a burden on small business.

How much this is related to a possible GOP primary challenge by Kay Bailey Hutchinson is easy "impossible" to say. I venture to guess it is about 100% related to it. Playing politics with the struggles of the unemployed. Just terrible.

Speaking for me only

< If Mark Sanford Really Doesn't Want The Fed Money . . . | Senate Confirms David Ogden as Deputy Attorney General >
  • The Online Magazine with Liberal coverage of crime-related political and injustice news

  • Contribute To TalkLeft

  • Display: Sort:
    This unemployed Texan (5.00 / 5) (#3)
    by lobary on Thu Mar 12, 2009 at 04:05:01 PM EST
    has a blunt, two-word response to Gov. Goodhair. I shall refrain from repeating it here as it likely violates Jeralyn's comment policy.

    Today's announcement (5.00 / 2) (#17)
    by dhb829 on Thu Mar 12, 2009 at 05:37:26 PM EST
    I am collecting unemployment benefits for the first time in 50 years and this is due to the economy. After Mr. Perry's announcement today that unemployment benefits will not be extended, I vote to make the state capitol lawn the next tent city as I'm about to be homeless thanks to his very elitist decision. SHAME ON RICK PERRY!

    I am furious about this. (5.00 / 3) (#22)
    by lobary on Thu Mar 12, 2009 at 06:54:28 PM EST
    Perry is jerk. While Texas taxpayers pay over nine grand a month for his temporary housing in a gated neighborhood in wealthy West Austin, Perry snubs his nose at the unemployed by refusing to take accept help from the federal government.

    I look forward to the 2012 primary.


    The regular guv residence is being repaired? (none / 0) (#24)
    by DFLer on Thu Mar 12, 2009 at 08:39:51 PM EST
    or something?

    The governor's mansion had a fire. Seems that (none / 0) (#25)
    by Angel on Thu Mar 12, 2009 at 08:52:05 PM EST
    our legislature and governor were too busy taking care of their friends instead of taking care of security of the mansion.  An arsonist struck and the security cameras were either turned off or didn't work properly as the only one working captured a very grainy and fuzzy image.  It will cost millions to repair and the funds are not currently available (imagine that!) so the governor decided to move to a grand mansion to the tune of $9000 a month at taxpayer expense.  Perry is a dumba$$ who cares only about himself and his cronys.  

    Twice. (none / 0) (#26)
    by lobary on Thu Mar 12, 2009 at 08:57:50 PM EST
    Rick and Anita moved out in October of 2007 to accommodate renovations on the Governor's mansion. About nine months into the renovation, an arsonist set fire to the building. The mansion was basically destroyed. The total cost to restore the mansion is expected to be anywhere from 25-30 million dollars.

    Thanks angel & lobary (none / 0) (#31)
    by DFLer on Fri Mar 13, 2009 at 09:00:44 AM EST
    that''s quite a story!

    The Texas Legislature in Session (5.00 / 2) (#19)
    by TexasYellowDog on Thu Mar 12, 2009 at 05:59:59 PM EST
    The Biennial Texas Legislature is in session the first four months of this year, and they are hungry for money.  D's are back up to one House seat behind the R's, but still behind in the Senate.  Perry is not really admired here by Republican politicians, so we might have a fight over that money between the Gov and the Legislature.  

    It's about time business stopped shirking responsibility by employing every worker part time.  If you have two part time jobs to survive and you lose both, you should get unemployment.

    If you have worked all your life, but your last job lasted only three months, you should get unemployment.

    A business should have "beyond a reasonable doubt" proof to claim firing for cause.

    Yeah, the legislature is in business. And guess (5.00 / 1) (#21)
    by Angel on Thu Mar 12, 2009 at 06:44:05 PM EST
    what issue they've spent the better part of this session on:  requiring driver's licenses or other proof of identity to vote.  Even though they spent over a million dollars to try to prove there was some voter fraud going on and they came up with nothing.  Voter fraud isn't a problem but unemployment and having enough funds to pay the unemployed is.  We have a bunch of idiots in control.  

    It's a heavily Republican state (5.00 / 1) (#23)
    by TeresaInSnow2 on Thu Mar 12, 2009 at 08:00:26 PM EST
    People may actually buy into the notion of cutting off their own nose to spite their faces.

    My Republican brother's wife was injured AT WORK.  Her work put her on leave of absence, no pay.  Shrug -- thems the breaks, yes?  Suddenly paychecks started coming.  My brother couldn't believe it! she was actually getting paid while taking time off to recoup from her ON THE JOB injury.  

    He said, "gee, they usually 'don't like to pay' for such things."

    I said, "it's the LAW, GREG!  They have to pay whether they like it or not.  It's worker's comp!"

    But without her union, she'd have taken her licks and thought nothing of it.  You should work, and if you can't work, you starve, even if your boss was at fault for your injury....of course, these people all think nothing of the rich getting even richer off their backs.  It's sick, really.

    Of course, Texas is also a state where I think that worker's comp insurance is voluntary.

    I hope this is his waterloo (none / 0) (#1)
    by Saul on Thu Mar 12, 2009 at 03:55:43 PM EST
    and a sign that he is on the way out.

    Kay Bailey Hutchison is just as bad. Kinky (none / 0) (#2)
    by Angel on Thu Mar 12, 2009 at 03:59:04 PM EST
    Friedman was a spoiler the last election.  We could have had Chris Bell, a decent Democrat.  And Kinky is at it again saying he's going to run.  

    He can't beat KBH (none / 0) (#4)
    by andgarden on Thu Mar 12, 2009 at 04:08:21 PM EST
    If she's running, he's losing.

    Yep. (none / 0) (#5)
    by lobary on Thu Mar 12, 2009 at 04:13:06 PM EST
    The only Republican less popular than Perry is Tom Craddick. Kay Bailey will beat him like a pinata at a quinceanera.

    social engineering (none / 0) (#6)
    by diogenes on Thu Mar 12, 2009 at 04:14:45 PM EST
    If this is just really about helping the unemployed, then why all the strings attached to the money which will last long after the money is gone?  Heck, why doesn't Obama just pick up the tab for all unemployment benefits instead of having businesses pay for them (thus making it more expensive to hire workers).

    Because (5.00 / 5) (#7)
    by eric on Thu Mar 12, 2009 at 04:24:05 PM EST
    he wants Texas to change their policy.  It is that simple.

    "Social engineering"? Every law ever passed that affects society is "social engineering".  Give somebody a mortgage interest tax break on their house?  Sounds like social engineering.  Lower taxes on some group of people to encourage some kind of behavior?  Social engineering.  Tell the states that they need to lower their speed limit or raise their drinking age if they want highway funds?  Social engineering.



    KBH responds (5.00 / 2) (#8)
    by lobary on Thu Mar 12, 2009 at 04:24:41 PM EST
    "I hope that the Governor has carefully thought through the potential outcomes of today's decision. With the state unemployment fund dangerously close to falling below the legal threshold, it is imperative that the Governor does nothing that potentially burdens small businesses with higher taxes in tough economic times or pushes those who have recently become unemployed and their families into further economic peril," said Hutchison, in a statement.

    Unemployment tax also paid by workers. (5.00 / 2) (#9)
    by DFLer on Thu Mar 12, 2009 at 04:31:38 PM EST
    Google fraud employer "unemployment tax" for a look at the countless cases of Employers not paying this tax, or worse, collecting from workers and not forwarding it to the proper authorities. Look at the IRS site for additional employer fraud cases. Additionally, accounting firms have been soliciting business on how to duck these taxes, as well.

    If this is really about helping business, why not be truly honest about the lay of the land?

    There are other schemes to avoid paying unemployment, like changing the issue, date etc around the job loss to disqualify the worker, like categorizing the employee as an independent contractor, etc etc. How's that for REAL social engineering by the employers?


    Also (5.00 / 2) (#10)
    by jbindc on Thu Mar 12, 2009 at 04:38:18 PM EST
    Just watch more employers try to fight the benefits.  Employee records will now show a huge increase in "firings" for cause, so they don't have to pay it out.  Or they will make workplaces intolerable to work in (but not quite "hostile work environments") so the employee will quit and not be eligible for benefits.

    yes, thanks (none / 0) (#11)
    by DFLer on Thu Mar 12, 2009 at 05:04:14 PM EST
    that's a clearer way to put what I meant by the other schemes: "firing for cause" etc. It's already increasing. Thanks for the exposition.

    To be fair to the employers, (none / 0) (#29)
    by Inspector Gadget on Fri Mar 13, 2009 at 01:18:44 AM EST
    the economy is forcing them to be more diligent about not carrying non-performers. I've worked with so many people who just want to know what they are getting and feel no obligation to contribute to the success of the company that employs them. For the employers to survive, they have to operate lean and smart.

    A method for that used around here for years (none / 0) (#34)
    by DFLer on Fri Mar 13, 2009 at 10:16:27 AM EST
    is to staff via a temporary agency. So these manufacturers have no personnel dept. (what do they call it now? ...H..something?), avoid paying benefits like health care, paid vacation after a period of service etc.

    I had to laugh when a local manufacturer who hired solely as above, bemoaned that fact that they couldn't maintain a "loyal" workforce that stuck around on the job, and would be shifting jobs to another city with a bigger labor pool. What a joke. Loyal to whom? The temp agency?


    Employees don't contribute to (none / 0) (#28)
    by Inspector Gadget on Fri Mar 13, 2009 at 01:14:46 AM EST
    unemployment in WA State.

    It's an insurance that employers are mandated to provide.


    UI Taxes (none / 0) (#33)
    by Campionrules on Fri Mar 13, 2009 at 10:07:24 AM EST
    Nowhere in the US do employees pay into UI taxes. That's not to say that company's occasionally don't pay there UI tax. When that happens UI will investigate and force the company to pay out the benefits - if they can find the company. Also being fired or qutting does not disqualify you from unemployment - it makes it much harder to be determined eligible but very, very possible.

    if labor costs more... (none / 0) (#36)
    by diogenes on Sat Mar 14, 2009 at 04:53:55 PM EST
    If it costs more to hire labor, fewer workers will be hired.  If Obama lifts the burden of paying for unemployment insurance from business, more workers will be hired.  

    Playing Games.... (none / 0) (#12)
    by kdog on Thu Mar 12, 2009 at 05:12:28 PM EST
    These GOP governors denying funds are just pulling political stunts...same old b.s.

    Yet it gets me to thinking if bigger is not better, maybe we're better served by states, cities, and communities planning localized economic recovery.  We're all seeing how bigger is not better for banks and corporations...?

    Look at Mayor Booker in Newark, looks like he's making some positive things happen...why not just divy up the loot no strings attached and let states/cities/communities sort themselves out.  And if your community elects con-artists its on your community.

    Kdog (5.00 / 1) (#13)
    by jbindc on Thu Mar 12, 2009 at 05:23:32 PM EST
    You realize

    maybe we're better served by states, cities, and communities planning localized economic recovery.

    Is one of the basic tenets of the Republican Party?  Smaller, more localized government is one of their whole reasons for being.

    Not that I want to accuse you of being a Republican, or anything.  ;)


    A "tenet" (5.00 / 1) (#15)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Thu Mar 12, 2009 at 05:25:16 PM EST
    they only honor when convenient.

    True (n/t) (5.00 / 1) (#16)
    by jbindc on Thu Mar 12, 2009 at 05:26:53 PM EST
    But which many centrists, (none / 0) (#20)
    by oldpro on Thu Mar 12, 2009 at 06:23:26 PM EST
    Democrats and progressives honored every day for the last 8 years.

    What the Hell else did we have?  Until we could effect the federal level again...

    It's my view that "all politics is local" and one can honor both local and national politics at the same time.  If not, sometimes one...sometimes the other...and work on the one where the people I support are out of power.


    Exactly... (none / 0) (#30)
    by kdog on Fri Mar 13, 2009 at 08:09:08 AM EST
    they talk the talk but don't walk the walk.

    This makes the Republicans looked even worse (none / 0) (#14)
    by BernieO on Thu Mar 12, 2009 at 05:23:54 PM EST
    if that is possible. I used to live in Texas and can't believe this won't backfire on him. His donors may love it, but there are far too many working class people in the state who will hate excoriate for this.

    Texas politics has always been looney. If you haven't read the late Molly Ivins' hilarious books on the topic you should. I really miss her.

    Elected that lameass (none / 0) (#18)
    by jondee on Thu Mar 12, 2009 at 05:48:10 PM EST
    Governor; what more do you need to know?

    Does anyone suppose (none / 0) (#27)
    by cal1942 on Thu Mar 12, 2009 at 11:46:17 PM EST
    that Perry is throwing his hat in the ring for 2012 along with Sanborn?

    That'd make a hell of a primary.  

    With what's left of the Republican Party choosing the absolute worst example of irresponsibility as standard bearer maybe they'll shrink to insignificance.

    We can only hope.

    Doubt it. (none / 0) (#32)
    by lobary on Fri Mar 13, 2009 at 10:00:15 AM EST
    Texas Republicans are toast on the national scene, and Perry doesn't even have the strong support of most Texas Republicans. He wants to become the Lifetime President of Texas, but in order to keep his streak alive he needs to do something to separate himself from Kay Bailey Hutchison. Perry  will find it difficult to go negative against her in the 2010 gubernatorial primary. She will crush him.

    Is there a prayer (none / 0) (#35)
    by cal1942 on Fri Mar 13, 2009 at 08:24:14 PM EST
    that a Democrat could pick up Hutchinson's Senate seat?