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Republican Leaders Boehner, Cantor Trash Workers

by Mike Hall, Aug 6, 2010 //


House Minority Leader Rep. John Boehner and House Republican Whip Eric Cantor

House Minority Leader Rep. John Boehner has a few choice words for all the teachers, cops, fire fighters, and other workers who will be able to stay on the job because the U.S. Senate this week was able to break the Republican filibuster on the jobs bill.

He is calling these hard-working women and men: special interests. No different, apparently, from the special interests at the Wall Street banks, job-exporting corporations and big insurance companies Boehner and Republicans love to pal around with.

And as for autoworkers, House Republican Whip Eric Cantor (R-Va.) has some choice words for you too. More on that below.

Boehner says the jobs bill (the House is expected to pass it next week), which provides $26 billion in funding to bolster state budgets, including $10 billion to prevent massive teacher layoffs, is a “payoff” to unions and special interests.

But unlike Boehner’s real special interests—see above—the assistance for the workers who toil to support their families and pay mortgages is about $725 billion short of the Bush Bank bailout.

On top of that, it’s unlikely that any of the teachers or cops will be invited to play golf with Boehner at the tony country clubs where he’s hustled big-time donations from his bank buddies and corporate cronies for the Republican PAC Freedom Project. According to a Freedom Project spokesman, the golf outings have raised hundreds of thousands of dollars from those special interest who shared 18 holes of golf and probably some 19th hole libations.

Rep. Chris Van Hollen (D-Md.) says it is incredible that

Republican Leader John Boehner disparagingly referred to those who teach our children, protect our homes, and keep our streets safe as “special interests.” Washington Republicans are opposed to supporting our teachers, firefighters and policemen at home in order to protect corporate tax loopholes that promote the export of American jobs.

The jobs bill that Boehner so adamantly trashed closes tax loopholes for multi-national corporations that send U.S. jobs overseas to help pay to keep American workers on the job. Maybe they’re Boehner’s golf partners.

Cantor  piled on by insulting the nation’s auto workers, 55,000 more of whom are working today because of the Obama administration’s financial rescue of the U.S. auto industry

This week, President Obama made another visit to an auto plant where cars are coming off the assembly line because, writes Washington Monthly’s Steve Benen:

The White House wants to emphasize good economic news where it can be found, and more importantly, it wants to remind the public that at a moment of crisis last year, Obama was right about the industry rescue and Republicans were wrong.

That stuck in the craw of Cantor, who issued a statement asking, “Just who exactly is President Obama celebrating with?”

How about the autoworkers who have jobs?  As Benen writes:

I know Eric Cantor isn’t the sharpest crayon in the box. But the easiest, most basic form of patriotism is taking at least some pleasure when good things happen to your country.

Sure, Republicans don’t want to talk about this—in part because good news interferes with their election strategy, and in part because this progress wouldn’t have happened if they were in charge last year. Indeed, if we’d listened to Cantor and his cohorts, the American auto industry would be left in shambles, hundreds of thousands of jobs would be lost, and the backbone of American manufacturing would have been broken. At a moment of crisis, Republicans had it backwards.

But that’s no excuse for Cantor’s petty partisanship.

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