NC Unemployment woes

Berger may have a bumpy road to re-election

Unemployed chickens coming home to roost:

The state Senate leader’s largely rural district in Eden is facing an economic crisis because about 520 well-paid brewery workers are facing unemployment. MillerCoors is shutting down its Eden brewery, despite the facility’s apparent success and MillerCoors’ big investments in modernizing it.

And do you suppose Berger might be a little worried about what his constituents will face when they’re laid off? He should be. All those families whose votes he counts on will be dumped into the unemployment system that he also gutted. They’ll be getting some of the smallest, shortest-duration unemployment checks in the country and won’t be eligible for long-term benefits. Berger and his colleagues slashed all of those benefits, suggesting they only inspired laziness. Sorry, folks, but it was the right thing to do for the state. So get out there and hustle for those jobs — which, unfortunately, may not even exist.

A lot of those folks will qualify for the maximum weekly benefit, which used to be $535. Now it's $350 (before taxes), for only about six weeks, instead of over half a year with the Federal extension the GOP made sure we no longer can access. I genuinely feel for these workers. I know what it's like to have a factory you've dedicated a couple of decades of your life close its doors on you. But many of those folks have been faithfully pushing the button for Berger and turning a blind eye to the hundreds of thousands of their fellow North Carolinians who have struggled to feed their families and keep their homes after these unnecessary cuts, and it's long past time they asked the Bergermeister some hard questions.

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