July 20, 2010— -- With the nation's unemployment rate standing at close to 10 percent, Congress is poised to break a Republican fillibuster and extend unemployment benefits to millions of out-of-work Americans.
But the bill will pass with little support from the Republicans in Congress, many of whom argue that Congress cannot keep spending money the country does not have. They say that the cost of the unemployment package must be paid for with cuts somewhere else in the budget, pointing to a growing deficit.
"The budget is over a trillion dollars, too, and somewhere in the course of spending a trillion dollars, we ought to be able to find enough to pay for a program for the unemployed," Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell said on Sunday. "We're all for extending unemployment insurance. The question is when are we going to get serious about the debt"?
On Monday, President Obama put pressure on Republicans, saying, "It's time to stop holding workers laid off in this recession hostage to Washington politics. It's time to do what's right, not for the next election, but for the middle class."
Our question to you today: Republicans say Congress can't spend money it doesn't have. Do you agree or disagree?