The governor of South Carolina said Monday that federal unemployment programs providing an extra $300 to jobless residents ‘puts us right on the road to socialism’.
Republican Henry McMaster announced on Thursday that his state will opt out of the coronavirus pandemic assistance programs beginning June 30.
He told Tucker Carlson Monday that his state is experiencing a labor shortage as a result of the boosts. That came after experts revealed that people making $32,000 before COVID could now earn more by staying at home.
McMaster said: ‘This is about as close to socialism that I’ve seen. We’ve gone help-wanted signs up everywhere, we get calls and letters, and texts from all sorts of businesses all across the state looking for people to work.
‘People won’t come to work because they’re getting as much money or more in some cases by staying home.’
McMaster said Monday: ‘It’s a counterproductive policy and I’m afraid what the Biden administration is doing is that they’re telling everybody that the virus is still rampant and still in great danger. Everybody has to stay home. That’s not true.
‘We’ve got people and businesses that are looking for people actively every day and can’t find them because they are at home the pay. Go get a job, get back to work. That’s how you build an economy and a family and everything else.
‘The Biden proposals are totally underproductive, killing incentive, and it puts us right on the road to socialism. We’ve got to stand up and fight against this.’
The Labor Department reported on Friday that the US economy added 266,000 jobs in April, well below the 1 million jobs that most forecasters expected.
South Carolina governor Henry McMaster has said federal unemployment benefits ‘put us on the road to socialism’ telling Tucker Carlson they’ve led to labor shortages
Bank of America estimates that anyone who earned $32,000 before the pandemic can now get more from a combination of state and federal unemployment benefits.
They are also allowed to claim benefits for up to 39 weeks – nearly a full year – whereas before, it was capped at 26 weeks. The average US salary in 2019 was $31,133.
The federal benefits include an extra weekly $300 to unemployed workers that was scheduled to run through early September.
Joe Biden was on Monday forced to warn anyone taking unemployment who gets offered a ‘suitable job’ that they must take it or lose their benefits.
The president has rejected calls by Republicans to cut the extra $300 weekly unemployment benefit passed under his COVID relief plan. That benefit expires in September.
In eight states, the unemployed can earn at least $600 per week in benefits. Massachusetts offers the most generous benefits
In March 2019, the average weekly payment to an unemployed person was $348 when combining federal and state unemployment payments. That nearly tripled to $938 in March 2020. Now they’re still $638 -a-week – $300 more than they were before. It means, someone who was working 40 hours a week before the pandemic now gets nearly $16-an-hour to do nothing at home, which is more than double the federal minimum wage of $7.25
In April, only 266,000 people joined the workforce – a quarter of the 1million that were predicted to join. The loss has stunned experts and prompted many to ask why. The conclusion most have drawn is that there isn’t enough of an incentive to go back
‘In many instances, these payments are greater than the worker’s previous pay checks,’ McMaster had said in a statement announcing the programs would end.
‘What was intended to be a short-term financial assistance for the vulnerable and displaced during the height of the pandemic has turned into a dangerous federal entitlement, incentivizing and paying workers to stay at home rather than encouraging them to return to the workplace,’ he added.
Montana Gov. Greg Gianforte has also said his state also would be leaving the federal unemployment program. Arkansas and Mississippi has announced similar plans.
In Florida, Governor Ron DeSantis has already told people that they have to prove they are looking for jobs again if they want to receive unemployment.
President Joe Biden said that anyone taking unemployment who gets offered a ‘suitable job’ must take it
Republican McMaster announced on Thursday that his state will opt out of the coronavirus pandemic assistance programs beginning June 30
In March 2019, the average weekly payment to an unemployed person was $348 when combining federal and state unemployment payments.
That nearly tripled to $938 in March 2020, when Donald Trump signed the CARES ACT – a temporary economic plan that boosted weekly unemployment payments by $600 and also gave employed people one-off stimulus checks.
The CARES ACT expired in July and the unemployment boost was halved to $300-a-week. Now, they are $638-a-week on average and they’ll stay that way until September 6 at least.
It means, someone who was working 40 hours a week before the pandemic now gets nearly $16-an-hour to do nothing at home, which is more than double the federal minimum wage of $7.25.
It has created a scenario where restaurant workers, cleaners, retail workers and other people who slogged for minimum wage are simply choosing to stay at home because they earn more and are not put at risk of catching the virus.
Now, the only way for businesses to make up for it is by raising their prices – and Republicans are up in arms about the fast-paced inflation it is causing.
Unemployment skyrocketed to 14% in April 2020, when the country shut down along with the rest of the world. It has since dropped to 6 percent but it’s around double the 3 percent it had been in 2019
This is how unemployment maps across America. The darkest shaded states – many of which are Democrat states – are where it is the highest. Some of those states like New York, have among the highest combination of benefits in the country. Massachusetts has the highest with a max of $855 a week. The unemployment rate in Massachusetts is 7.1 percent – higher than the national average
States that voted for Biden lost jobs at a higher rate during COVID than states that voted Republican