Every dollar spent on unemployment benefits generates real economic growth. The Congressional Budget Office says you get $1.90 back for every dollar of unemployment compensation. Mark Zandi at Moody's says you get $1.61. The Labor Department says $2.
Any way you add it up, it provides an immediate boost to the local economy because the unemployed spend that money in their communities. Want to help a local small business or a small chain like Bi-Mart, Grocery Outlet or Food4Less? Extend unemployment compensation to jobless workers.
Tax cuts for the wealthiest folks in town, people who still have income and savings accounts, are windfall gains that will more likely be stashed away in that savings account or perhaps spent on a vacation somewhere else, maybe not even in the U.S.
Don't get me wrong. I have no problem with people taking vacations and going wherever they want to go. I'm just saying that if you really honestly want to improve the economy you should extend unemployment benefits and end the tax cuts for the rich.
It's not only the smart thing to do, it's the right thing to do if you really care about people who are down and out in any American community—rural, urban, suburban, ex-burb, whatever label you choose. Rep. Greg Walden apparently doesn't know that. His local office number is 541-389-4408 and a toll free call from the 541 area code can be made to 1-800-533-3303. Give him a call.