Earlier today, the House of Representatives passed a bill—by a vote of 247-161—providing states $16B in emergency funding to shore up their Medicaid budgets and $10B in an effort to stave off teacher layoffs. The bill is slated to be signed by the president this evening. According to Democratic estimates, the bill is expected to save 290,000 jobs, including 140,000 teachers’ positions.
Republic House Representative Mike Pence of Indiana wasn’t a fan of the bill. When asked by ABC’s Top Line what the Republican strategy would be for teachers who have lost their jobs, his response is, well, pretty telling:
Well, look: I’m married to a school teacher. My wife spent more than a decade in a public school classroom. So, I love teachers! Teachers, firefighters, policemen are all Americans and they all know that the economic policies of bailouts and handouts have failed to create jobs.
So, the Republicans don’t have a strategy for keeping teachers (yes, or education professionals) employed, or getting those out of work back into schools. Not to mention that the bill is completely paid for by closing a tax loophole, and should, according to the Congressional Budget Office, lower the deficit by $1.3B over ten years.
But, instead of proposing alternatives or even coming up with solutions, the Republicans just love teachers.