New Jersey's 26th Legislative District

Senator Joe Pennacchio

Senator Joe Pennacchio

Pennacchio to Murphy: Stop Politicking and Find a Way to Make Federal Unemployment Relief Work

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Murphy-Trump Honeymoon Over?

Senator Joe Pennacchio today called on Governor Murphy to help make federal unemployment relief a reality for almost 700,000 out-of-work New Jersey residents.

President Donald Trump signed an executive order Saturday that would provide an extra $400 more than basic unemployment benefits, replacing the $600 federal contribution that expired on July 31.

Senator Pennacchio urged Governor Murphy not to allow politics to interfere with $400 per week of additional federal aid for unemployed residents. (Wikimedia)

The federal government would pay $300 per week, and individual states would pick up $100, but Murphy has called the plan “unworkable.”

“Like Cuomo in New York and other Democrat governors, Murphy criticized this solution,” said Pennacchio (R-26). “He wants federal money to go to the state so he can spend it at will. That’s the wrong priority when so many New Jersey residents remain out of work through no fault of their own. Once again, he is prioritizing partisanship and politics over the people of our state.”

The President has said states that haven’t used all the federal stimulus money they received from the CARES Act could use that money for the $100 payments. Murphy has been sitting on more than $2 billion in federal funds.

“As the Governor of our state, he should be doing everything in his power to make this happen, not thumbing his nose and politicizing federal assistance,” said Pennacchio.

Murphy has shunned federal help before, Pennacchio noted, including failing to utilize the USS Comfort or the mobile field hospital at the Javits Center in New York City, and turning away the offer for thousands of medical first-responders from the federal government.

“Federal assets were at our disposal at the beginning of this pandemic, but Murphy chose to ignore them,” Pennacchio said. “That stubbornness led to the unnecessary deaths of almost 7,000 residents in long-term care facilities. Decisions have consequences.

“We can’t afford to make another mistake with unemployment,” Pennacchio continued. “The Governor should utilize some of the $2 billion in unspent CARES money, to help our unemployed citizens. One way or the other, almost 700,000 New Jersey families are counting on help.”

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