We applaud Gov. Haley R. Barbour for rejecting the portion of the federal stimulus package that would extend unemployment benefits to part-time workers and raise taxes on Mississippi businesses when the federal dollars run out.
In exchange for one-time federal monies, businesses could face a tax increase amounting to $16 million per year, a 15-percent increase in unemployment taxes.
The truth is, liberal labor organizations like the National Employment Law Project have pushed this legislation for the past decade. It does not modernize the unemployment system. It will not stimulate the economy. It is just bad policy that washed in on the Obama tide.
Barbour, a Republican, recognizes there is no free lunch and there is no free money. He has consistently opposed increasing the tax burden on employers and small businesses because he understands they create the jobs we need.
Increasing taxes on job creators is the opposite of economic stimulus.
Barbour is correct in rejecting the funds and the Legislature would be wrong to force this ill-conceived, tax heavy entitlement program on Mississippi.
The only thing this measure will stimulate is unemployment and higher taxes for Mississippi businesses.
To stimulate the economy, we need sustained tax cuts, not tax increases.
Madison County Journal Editorial