Skip to comments.Reid signals government jobs must take priority over private-sector jobs
Posted on 10/19/2011 10:38:45 AM PDT by NoLibZone
Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) on Wednesday indicated Congress needs to worry about government jobs more than private-sector jobs, and that this is why Senate Democrats are pushing a bill aimed at shoring up teachers and first-responders.
"It's very clear that private-sector jobs have been doing just fine; it's the public-sector jobs where we've lost huge numbers, and that's what this legislation is all about," Reid said on the Senate floor.
Reid was responding to recent comments from Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.), who accused Democrats of purposefully pursuing higher taxes as part of the teacher/first-responder bill, S. 1723, so that Republicans would oppose it. McConnell said the bill was meant to fail in order to give Democrats an issue to run on in the 2012 election, but Reid said the Republicans are simply trying to defeat President Obama any way they can.
The legislation Reid is defending is part of Obama's jobs package. Vice President Biden was in Pennsylvania, an important election state, on Tuesday to push for the administration's plan on increasing the number of teachers.
Reid reiterated his emphasis on creating government jobs by saying Democrats are looking to "put hundreds of thousands of people back to work teaching children, have more police patrolling our streets, firefighters fighting our fires, doing the rescue work that they do so well that's our priority." He said Republicans are calling the bill a "failure" because they are "using a different benchmark for success than we are."
More from The Hill ♦ GOP angry about Reid claim they're rooting for failure ♦ McConnell: Obama 'doing his best Howard Dean impersonation' ♦ Obama's strategy is working even if Americans arent ♦ Tea Party's 'anybody but Obama' attitude benefits Romney ♦ House GOP looks to make legal case in Solyndra debacle
Private-sector jobs have increased over the last 19 months, while government jobs have lagged. They've also seen cuts in several states that are struggling to balanced their books.
Reid also said a majority of people polled support the bill, and that the tax hike needed to fund the $35 billion spending program is minimal.
"My friend, the Republican leader is complaining about a tax of one-half of 1 percent on people who make more than $1 million a year to pay for a program that would stop teachers from being laid off and rehire some of the teachers that have been laid off," Reid said.
Democrats who support the bill have said it would help save 400,000 teacher jobs and thousands of first-responder jobs that have either been cut or could soon be cut. Reid said Wednesday that these layoffs are "rooted in the last administration," but did not explain further.
Senate Democrats are hoping to pass S. 1723 as early as this week, although votes could be delayed until early November, depending on the progress made on passing a 2012 spending bill.
Reid also dismissed efforts by the Republican House to ease environmental regulations as a way to create jobs.
"The Republican response has been cutting back environmental health safeguards, I guess hoping that a sicker, more polluted country is a better place to create jobs, and it's not," Reid said.
A spokesman for Reid pointed out that Senate Democrats have tried to pass several bills aimed at spurring private sector job growth, but have been blocked by Republicans. Among other things, Democrats have proposed tax cuts to help companies hire workers and write off expenses, as well as infrastructure jobs that would add to private construction payrolls.
-- This story was last updated at 1:07 p.m.
I didn’t know they served magic mushrooms in the Senate dining hall.
I know at least 100 people that need to lose their government jobs. gReid is one of them.
Obama's entire effort has been to grow the government and the jobs in government...whcih have expanded significantly the last 3 years.
In fact, the fact that so few private sector jobs have been created (you know, the ones that actually produce something) is why things continue to get worse and worse. We are holding up and repressing private sector productive jobs for public sector jobs that continue to just suck the economy dry.
But that is Obama's purpose and a main stay of his "fundamental change."
keeps exceeding my expectations on stupidity.
Reid’s statement proves beyond a shadow of doubt that the Senate is not “The World’s Greatest Deliberative Body”, but is “The World’s Greatest Body of Personable Idiots”.
We don’t live in “Republic” anymore.. The Federal Government had become a nation unto itself - within our “nation” - and it has declared war on the private sector.
It will seek to pillage the private sector - for its self preservation - in the same way a conquering army will loot another country it has defeated.
the message is... If you don’t work for the Federal Government.. Too bad!! “ hand over your cash... I need my job”.
Reid is a complete and utter failure. I can’t imagine why the citizens of Nevada keep putting him in office.
For those who remember the old Soviet Union, it was a grim place at least for average citizens. But not so for those in government. Contrary to the official ideals of equality and a classless society that the ruling communist regime espoused, the USSR created a privileged class of party members inside government the nomenklatura.
This semipermanent bureaucracy earned higher incomes, got better health care, ate better food and had greater job security than average Russians, the much-despised proletarians. Today, our bloated federal government seems, in significant ways, to be creating this same dynamic.
BECAUSE THEYRE ENTITLED TO ALL THAT....sounds like Wisconsin public employees
In addition to Reid’s outrageous remarks, why is this the 100th time (at least) I’ve heard they need to raise taxes and spend more to keep teachers, cops, etc. employed.
Am I correct the previous 100 “fixes” didn’t work?
Why doesn’t a STATE raise taxes or whatever if it needs more teachers? Doesn’t that make a lot more sense than Harry Reid collecting money for Arkansas or wherever?
These are public union jobs. Public union employees pay dues to the public unions. These public unions give 99% of their political multi-million dollar campaign donations to democrats.
It is a giant kick-back plan to fund democrat candidates and the democrat party.
We need it now. We want it now. 2012 is going to be tough with obama on top of the ticket.
PS - Since when are LOCAL police and LOCAL firemen and LOCAL teacher jobs the duty of the FEDERAL government?
Well now, if we take Harry and Nancy at their word, isn’t all we need to do is make sure everyone is either a public employee or on welfare and our economic woes will be solved???
I disagree. Forgetting your keys or putting your glasses in the fridge are signs of distraction, not paying attention to what you are doing but probably thinking about what you are going to do next. I’ve been doing this since I was a teenager, many, many moons ago. Altho must say I haven’t done the refrigerator-keys bit. So far! :)
Dementia is when you don’t know what your keys or glasses are for.
Harry, I have no idea what the heck you’ve been smokin, but I could sure use a hit!
Quit Bogarting and pass the doob!
Sheesh, Its the only thing that can explain this.
You may be right. I was told that Alzheimer’s is when you forget what something like your keys or glasses are for. MIL is getting very forgetful as of late.
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