New TV Ad Blasts GOP’s Christmas-time Cruelness on Unemployment Benefits


Bad Santas: New TV Ad Excoriates Republicans in Congress for Depriving 1.3 Million Struggling Americans Of Unemployment Insurance Three Days After Christmas


Merry Christmas everyone from the GOP (except everyone who can’t find work in a 3-applicants-for-every-job economy) 



Click here to watch “Restore UI Now”

Washington DC (December 26th, 2013)– For Republicans in Congress, it’s a wonderful life.  After all, they still get paid even when they don’t do anything or shut down the government and leave things in worse shape than they found it.  But this time, the most unproductive Congress in more than six decades has really outdone themselves.  Despite the looming December 28th expiration date, Congressional Republicans refused to extend the unemployment insurance program for 1.3 million hurting out-of-work Americans before heading home for the holidays. They didn’t care that job applicants still vastly outnumber job openings in every industry sector amid a fragile economic recovery.  And if the GOP’s unwillingness to act continues, another 1.9 million Americans will lose this support in the first half of the new year, setting off a chain of negative economic consequences including 240,000 additional Americans thrown out of work and a .4 percent drop in GDP.

That’s why Americans United for Change is hitting the airwaves on national cable stations December 26 – 27 to help Republicans understand it’s not just in America’s economic interest but their own political interest to vote to restore unemployment benefits when it comes to a vote in the Senate early January.  See script below for “Restore UI Now” and watch it here:


The new ad comes on the heels of Public Policy Polling surveys commissioned last week by Americans United for Change in 4 key swing Congressional districts (CA-31, CO-6, IL-13 and MI-1), as well as Speaker John Boehner’s home district, which found overwhelming bipartisan opposition to cutting off extended unemployment benefits at the end of this year.  Survey results also showed that voters say they would be inclined to punish their already vulnerable representatives at the polls next year if they vote to cut off benefits.


Brad Woodhouse, President, Americans United for Change: “For Washington Republicans to Scrooge over a million Americans out of unemployment benefits three days after Christmas takes a lot of nerve and makes little economic sense.  All out-of-work Americans and their families got for Christmas from the GOP were lectures about pulling up on their bootstraps a little harder.  These hopelessly out-of-touch Republicans like Rand Paul don’t get why it’s insulting to tell people that have been desperately trying to find a job for months but can’t when there’s only one opening for every three applicants that cutting off their benefits will somehow be good for them, that it will motivate them to look harder. Looking at the polls in swing districts showing voters are significantly less likely to support an incumbent that refused to extend UI, many Republicans may soon gain a much greater appreciation of what it’s like to be out of a job if they don’t get their priorities straight.


“Before jetting home for Holiday break, Republicans insisted on a budget that took care of Medicare doctors with the ‘doc fix’, that took care of millionaires by not raising their taxes a nickel, and they took care of outsourcing corporations by not closing a single tax loophole.  But when it came to their jobless constituents who really needed support, Republicans could only offer the invisible hand of the market and a ‘Get Employed Soon’ card for Christmas.


“This ad campaign is designed to make Republicans consider a new New Year’s resolution: to stop purposely doing things to hurt the economy.  A prime example is forcing UI benefits to lapse when the long-term unemployment rate is currently twice as high as when the government let prior extended unemployment benefit programs lapse.   What don’t Republicans get about this equation: millions fewer people with money to spend equals less economic demand for goods and services and less need for jobs?   It’s why the CBO consistently ranks unemployment insurance as “one of the most effective policies for generating economic growth and creating jobs”, because unemployment benefits put money in the pocket of consumers who immediately put it back into their local economies.  On the flip side, when unemployed workers have less money to spend, research shows local businesses see their sales drop and job creation is undermined.  It’s Econ 101 – and Republicans failed miserably.” 


Previous from Americans United, Dec. 18: Editorial/Economist Roundup: Failing to Extend Unemployment Insurace ‘Pound Foolish’, a ‘Cruel Joke’, ‘Lump of Coal’





Americans United for Change is a 501c4 issue-advocacy organization established in 2005 to beat back President Bush’s effort to privatize Social Security and that has been working ever since to advance a progressive agenda in Congress including health care reform, reversing climate change, ending the war in Iraq, Wall Street reform, protecting Medicare/Medicaid/Social Security from benefit cuts, minimizing gun violence, and requiring millionaires and big corporations to pay their fair share in taxes.


“Restore UI Now”

Ad Back-Up

Americans United For Change

TV  (:30)




ANNCR:  You know who had a Merry Christmas?


CG:  Do You Know Who Had a Merry Christmas?




ANNCR:  The richest one percent, that’s who.  Republicans in Congress made sure of that… protecting billions in taxpayer giveaways.



CG: The Richest 1%...thanks to the GOP


Houston Chronicle: Budget agreement preserves tax breaks for oil industry [12/12/13]


Bill Doesn’t Close Loopholes: “It does not change entitlement spending, close tax loopholes or address the debt ceiling.” [National Journal, 12/18/13]

Q: Does this deal close tax loopholes? A. No. The Bipartisan Budget Act of 2013 does not tackle tax loopholes, otherwise known as Tax Expenditures. [National Priorities Project, “FAQ: The Bipartisan Budget Act of 2013”]

NPR: 6 Things Missing From The Budget Agreement: “Taxes Republicans were adamant that any deal couldn't raise revenue through new taxes, so there are none. Instead, the deal raises money to offset reduced sequester cuts through new or higher fees.” [12/11/13]

“The deal crafted by Murray and Representative Paul Ryan, a Wisconsin Republican, doesn’t include tax increases Republicans oppose or entitlement-program changes that Democrats resist.” [Bloomberg, 12/18/13] 

In fact, Republicans refused to close any corporate loopholes under any circumstances. “Sen. Kelly Ayotte (R-N.H.) called the provision “a dealbreaker” and urged her colleagues to find an alternative. “We could quickly find $6 billion that would not be taken from the backs of our men and women in uniform,” she said. That prompted her home-state colleague, Sen. Jeanne Shaheen (D), to propose replacing the pension cuts by closing a variety of corporate tax loopholes — an idea Republicans roundly ignored.” [Washington Post, 12/17/13]

ANNCR:   And for those facing tough times? Republicans stripped one-point-three million Americans of jobless benefits – folks who want to work, but cannot find a job – kicking them to the curb during Christmas.


CG: Youngstown, OH Vindicator, Dec. 18, 2013: Failure to extend jobless aid will make life tough for many


Bloomberg Businessweek, Dec. 9, 2013: 1.3 Million Americans Are About to Have a Terrible Christmas 


Vindicator, 12/18/13

Bloomberg Businessweek, 12/9/13

ANNCR:  So to the one-point-three million Americans losing benefits – Merry Christmas… from the G-O-P.


CG: To the 1.3 million Americans Losing Benefits on December 28th


Merry Christmas from the GOP




ANNCR:  It’s wrong to leave more than a million Americans behind.


CG: It’s Wrong to Leave 1.3 Million Americans Behind



ANNCR:  Tell Republicans: Restore Unemployment Benefits Now.



CG: Tell Republicans


Restore Unemployment Insurance Benefits Now


Paid for by Americans United for Change.