In yesterday's Washington Post, Steve Shannon wrote a scathing editorial about Governor Bob McDonnell and the Virginia General Assembly about how they have not expanded unemployment benefits over the past two years. He blasted them for not "expanding the eligibility criteria, thus preventing Virginia from collecting this $125.5 million in economic stimulus funds." The $125.5 million would have been apportioned to Virginia through the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 if VA chose to expand their eligibility to include two out of these four items:
- People seeking part-time work;
- People who are in a state-approved training program who have lost their jobs in a declining industry;
- People who became unemployed because of a compelling family reason, such as caring for a sick or disabled family member;
- Or the state can offer eligible claimants with dependents a stipend of at least $15 per week for each dependent.
What Steve Shannon failed to mention was the overwhelming opposition to these proposals by the business community... You know ... the folks that actually EMPLOY individuals... and how it would only add to our unemployment problems and add additional cost to already struggling employers.
He also forgot to mention the Steve Shannon tax increase, that would be associated with broadening unemployment benefits and how impossible it is to undo the expansion if it ever passed...
Instead of kicking off another run at Attorney General with a pathetic piece like this, Former Delegate and wannabe Attorney General Steve Shannon might be better off to remain in hiding and keep his ideas to himself. Lucky for us we have Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli bringing common sense to Virginia.