Isn’t it too soon for reruns of this movie?
Sen. Tom Coburn (R-OK) promised that he’d be the next Sen. Jim Bunning (R-KY) if he had to be. And last night, he made good on his threat.
Coburn is blocking unanimous consent on extension of unemployment benefits, just as Bunning did a few weeks ago. Only this time, Coburn’s not alone — the Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell and other members of the Republican caucus have joined with Coburn, promising to block billions in unemployment benefits just as the Senate is set to leave on a two-week recess.
Due to the timing of the blockade, benefits could expire on April 5, a situation that would not be remedied for a week while the Senate is out of town. Senators will return from their Easter break on April 12.
When Bunning blocked the benefits extension in early March, government programs funded by the money — which includes everything from construction work, unemployment payments and doctor’s fees — were only shut down for a matter of hours. This time, with the expiration coming on April 5 while the Senate is in recess, the shutdown could last for days.
Bunning’s great victory must have gone to their heads. Now everyone wants a part of the glory.
I guess I’m going to use the phrase “sociopathic indifference” twice today.