CNN's Romans: Unemployment Benefits Extension 'Would Not Come Out of Your Pocket and My Pocket'

November 5th, 2009 10:27 PM

On her segment of CNN Newsroom this morning, anchor Heidi Collins asked business correspondent Christine Romans about Senate action on extending yet again unemployment benefits:

CHRISTINE ROMANS, CNN BUSINESS CORRESPONDENT: You're right. And Heidi, all of those things that you mentioned are incredibly important to your money and all of them could affect you very, very near-term here. This extension of the unemployment benefits, it would be the third.

The Senate has passed it. It goes to the House. It's expected to be voted on and passed very, very quickly here. Because, remember, your Congress member and your senator, they are being inundated in their offices with questions from people saying, wait, how am I going to survive when this check runs out? Seven thousand checks running out every week.

It would be a 14-week extension nationwide, 20 weeks of unemployment. More unemployment benefits for the states with 8.5 percent unemployment or more. And this would be paid by a two-year extension of an existing -- existing tax on employers. So this would be paid for by a tax on employers.

It would not come out of your pocket and my pocket. But it would be the third extension here, Heidi. And it's critically important. Like I said, so many people are losing their unemployment benefits right now. Some 200,000 have lost their jobless benefits just as the Senate has been negotiating this.

In parroting the liberal theme that big bad business, not taxpayers, will actually foot the tab, Romans does a disservice to viewers.  The late Milton Friedman, Nobel Laureate in Economics, explained why in 2005 testimony given the President's Advisory Panel on Federal Tax Reform:

All taxes ultimately -- the consumer pays the taxes.  Nobody else pays the taxes.  Corporations don't pay taxes.  They collect them, but they don't pay them.  The only people who pay taxes are people and people are all consumers.

Yet Christine Romans claims you and I won't pay for the extension of unemployment benefits.  One way or the other, we will.