Obama seeking to shore up support among teachers, firefighter unions

That's what this $35 billion "jobs" bill is all about. The Hill:

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) signaled on Tuesday that he and other Senate Democrats are looking to advance President Obama's proposal to spend $35 billion to shore up jobs for teachers, police and firefighters in the coming weeks.

Reid, Sen. Robert Menendez (D-N.J.) and other Senate Democrats on Monday introduced the Teachers and First Responders Act, which mirrors the plan Obama has been touting in a bid to get Congress to pass pieces of his American Jobs Act. Under the proposal, $30 billion would be used to shore up 400,000 teacher jobs, and another $5 billion would go for thousands of police and firefighter jobs.

Reid said Tuesday that the bill, S. 1723, is "fully paid for," but said rather than cuts to other federal programs, it would raise taxes on the wealthy.


Democratic supporters say the bill is needed because about 300,000 teacher jobs have been lost since 2008. Menendez said in introducing the measure that failing to pass it puts at risk "the future of our children and the safety of our communities."

"Do it for the children" is the battle cry when a particularly odious piece of partisan legislation is being debated. This is entirely the fault of states that mis-appropriate monies and don't make the hard choices on budget priorities. They would rather fund some powerful politician's pet project than pay to keep teachers in the classroom.

It isn't a question of not having enough money; it's a question of spending the money on high priorities rather than fritter it away in pork barrel "politics as usual" projects.