Wed September 19, 2012
Paul Amendments Help Block Veterans Jobs Bill
Senate Republicans shelved the Veterans Jobs Corp Act on Wednesday due to amendments introduced by U.S. Sen. Rand Paul, R-Ky., that sought to strip foreign aid from Middle Eastern countries.
The jobs bill would have added a $1 billion to help create jobs and train returning veterans for the workforce. Last week, Paul proposed changes to the measure to take away U.S. assistance to Pakistan, Egypt and Libya in response to the recent protests and attacks against American consulates and embassies.
The changes would have tripled funding for the jobs bill, according to Paul's office. But the amendments put up a procedural step that required 60 votes to waive objections.
That vote failed 58-40 in the Senate on Wednesday.
From The New York Times:
The bill was opposed, by, among others, Senator Tom Coburn, Republican of Oklahoma, who said he believed the bill duplicated existing job programs for veterans that are not well run, and Senator Rand Paul, Republican of Kentucky, who has been seeking amendments on bills that would cut off funding to Egypt and to Pakistan until Pakistan freed Shakil Afridi, the doctor who helped the United States find Osama bin Laden.
[Senator Patty Murray, a Washington Democrat ] added that the vote was “stark reminder” that Mitch McConnell, Senate minority leader from Kentucky, and Senate Republicans “are willing to do absolutely anything to fulfill the pledge he made nearly two years ago to defeat President Obama. It doesn’t matter who gets in their way or which Americans they have to sacrifice in that pursuit, even if it’s our nation’s veterans.”