Tuesday, November 5, 2013

Reaping What Their Republican Votes Sowed

No, Hal Rogers is no whacko bird or even a teabagger. But as the supposedly powerful chair of the House Appropriations Committee, he has made no attempt to mitigate the teabagging whacko birds' vicious and inhuman attack on the working poor who keep voting to send him back to represent Kentucky's Fifth District.

Scott Lemieux at Lawyers, Guns and Money:

Suzy Khimm has some terrific reporting about the horrible effects of the sequester in rural Appalachia. A teaser:

But sequestration—a series of across-the-board spending cuts that many Tea Party Republicans have come to embrace—and other austerity measures have accelerated the economic free fall. Unemployment benefits to laid-off miners are shrinking; fewer meals are getting delivered to homebound seniors; and there’s less money to help workers retool for new jobs. Beginning Friday, food stamps will be cut by an average of $36 per month for a family of four.

It’s yet another blow to struggling Appalachian mining towns like Harlan, where the mayor estimates that 15% of the town’s residents have moved out in the past year, searching for work elsewhere.
The whole thing is very much worth reading. I wish I was more hopeful that more voters in districts like this would recognize that even if their own GOP representative opposes the worst policies a vote for Republican control of the House is a vote for a war on the poor.
Hal Rogers brings home the bacon: hundreds of minimum-wage, dead-end and soul-destroying jobs at call centers in the mountains of Eastern Kentucky. Hundreds of thousands of which could not make up for the economic catastrophe caused by repugs' lethal combination of subsidizing Big Coal and shredding the social safety net.

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