What to do when you are a conservative Republican who believes unemployment payments are “asking people not to work” but you lose your battle to cancel higher unemployment benefits within the CARES Act (meant to provide economic relief due to the impact of COVID-19)? Well, if you are McSally, you shamelessly take credit for the extra money that you fought to stop.
McSally, and many of her fellow Republicans, voted for an amendment to strip an extra $600 per week from unemployment benefits included in CARES, but their amendment failed. Then in a shameless promotional blitz, McSally said: “In Arizona it’s $240 a week right now, maximum. We’ve passed that up by $600. So that’s $840 a week and we have expanded who it applies to. So it also includes independent contractors, self-employed, part-time employed, gig economy workers.”
While her statement is true that the benefits went up, it is absolutely false for her to imply that she was part of the reason why this extra money will be included in Arizona unemployment checks.
What makes McSally’s original actions to stop this assistance in the first place and her deceptive use of the word we in order to claim credit for the assistance especially egregious is that McSally knew all along that:
* Arizona’s unemployment benefits are the second lowest in the nation, set at a maximum of $240 per week, and were only designed “to replace up to half of a worker’s prior weekly earnings up to a cap.”
* “88,592 people applied for first-time unemployment benefits in Arizona during the last week in March, shattering the weekly record of 11,178 new applications the week of July 4, 2009, after the Great Recession.”
* “The coronavirus pandemic seemed increasingly likely to push the United States into a recession, and Arizona would be taken along for the ride.”
Why would McSally work to give less to Arizonans in need? She thinks you are too lazy to seek a job if you are receiving benefits beyond an extreme poverty level.
A statement from McSally’s fellow Republicans, Tim Scott and Lindsey Graham of S.C., and Ben Sasse, of Neb., sums up their philosophy: they believed the original bill, with the higher benefits that they were trying to modify downward, could provide a “‘strong incentive for employees to be laid off instead of going to work’ because some people could theoretically make more by being unemployed.” Sasse even claimed, “This bill, as currently drafted, creates a perverse incentive for men and women who are sidelined to then not leave the sidelines to come back to work.”
That’s right Arizona, our unelected senator who voted for a tax bill that gave “the top 1 percent an average cut of $20,660,” believes that during a pandemic, when 1 in 10 of our workers are losing their jobs, due to no fault of their own, that any more than $960 a month would make the recently unemployed have no motivation to want to work.
McSally’s efforts to stop the more reasonable payments and her willful deception in taking credit for passing what she worked against, give us a glimpse into who McSally really is, and a reminder for why we always have to watch what she does, and not just what she says, to get a true picture of her agenda that is so disdainful of regular hardworking Arizonans.
McSally’s 2018 Campaign Workers Would Not Have Been Eligible for Unemployment Benefits
As jobless claims surge in Arizona due to COVID-19, let’s remember that time McSally’s campaign classified 13 apparently-full-time persons as independent contractors and avoided paying the employer’s share of payroll taxes, Social Security and Medicare witholding, and unemployment taxes…
Paul Weich discovered McSally’s tax dodging trick and posted the following article on his Arizona’s Politics website in October 2018.
Last year, Arizona Rep. Martha McSally (R-CD2) voted against permitting Congress to review the tax returns of President Donald Trump (as part of tax reform legislation). This year – as McSally has become a frequent defender of the President – her Senatorial campaign committee has taken the unusual position that there are NO (taxable) employees working on her campaign.
By classifying 13 apparently-full-time persons as independent contractors, McSally has avoided paying the employer’s share of payroll taxes, Social Security and Medicare withholding, unemployment taxes, benefits, etc.
Be sure to check out the Arizona’s Politics website for the rest of the article.