In a move that I applaud, the General Assembly narrowly rejected $125 million in Federal stimulus money, which would have provided for additional unemployment benefits to Virginia's laid off workers.
Republican leaders opposed the expansion of unemployment benefits, correctly in my view, stating that it would undermine the state's business-friendly reputation, since in exchange for accepting the money the state will eventually have to raise unemployment taxes on businesses. But isn't that the goal of Governor Kaine and the Democrats? In my opinion, this is their back door way of raising taxes on business.
Governor Tim Kaine was livid by the Assembly's rejection of the 125 million, telling reporters, "There's an awful lot of people who are hurting in Virginia, and the message to them seemed to be: 'We don't care. Fend for yourself."
While I think it is great to want to help the unemployed, this measure is bad for the state. The fact is this federal money is simply a gimmick which is designed to expand government, and increase taxes on Virginia businesses.
Nice try Governor but we ain't taking the bait.