Congress left Washington Friday for its traditional Memorial Day recess without acting to extend jobless benefits for hundreds of thousands of workers that are due to expire on Wednesday, five days before lawmakers return.Also left for later was the matter of how to pay for the Iraq and Afghanistan wars, as well as providing funds to help respond to the Gulf of Mexico oil spill. The Senate passed a $58.8 billion measure, but the House of Representatives put off action until it returns. ...
Congress is disliked to the point, now, where it can do no right.
I like that "we're at the point where people back home want us to pay for social spending." That's one way of recognizing that people (outrageously!) want Congress to spend the people's money on the people.
...With elections less than six months away, moderate Democrats are getting nervous. Earlier this month, Democratic leaders confidently predicted that their nearly $200 billion package of extended jobless benefits and other economic boosters would be done by now.Instead, centrists balked at the price tag, and after a week of tense negotiations that resulted in a dramatically pared-down bill, 34 House Democrats still voted against the plan and the Senate left without acting — and without predicting when it could reach an agreement.To constituents, said [Texas Rep. Henry] Cuellar (who backed the plan) and others, the deficit and the frustrating struggle to tame it are emblematic of an undisciplined, self-indulgent Congress."We've hit the wall," said Rep. Jason Altmire, D-Pa., a key moderate. "We're at the point where people back home want us to pay for social spending."
A May 13-16 Pew Research Center for the People & the Press survey found that Congress' gridlock has plunged it into a political quagmire. ...McClatchy