Coburn getting an ‘attitude problem’ from Senate dodging work on big issues

"And the reason I don't want to come anymore is because we're not doing anything to address the real problems that are in front of our country. We're ignoring the real problems so we can create political contrast for an election. All the while the country is sinking, sinking and sinking."

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Coburn said the jobs bill, S. 3457, appears to simply duplicate several other jobs programs for veterans. He also complained that the $1 billion, five-year program would be paid for in part by a 10-year tax change.

"When we find ourselves $16 trillion in debt, and we're gonna pay for another bill over five years by 10 years of changes, we never get out of the problem. We make the problem worse," he said on the Senate floor.

"We have six veteran job-training programs," Coburn said. "We already have a preference across the federal government for hiring veterans. We have SBA [Small Business Administration] programs like crazy. We have contracting programs ... we have all these programs, but not one hearing has been held by the committee of jurisdiction overseeing the job training programs.

"We don't know if they're working," he added. "What are we doing? We're proposing another job program for veterans without having done the serious work of how we invest $1 billion."

The bill being considered Wednesday, a version offered by Sen. Patty Murray (D-Wash.), would let the IRS increase fees to Medicare service providers with tax delinquencies, reduce pension benefits for some veterans and restructure the timing of quarterly payments for corporations.

But Coburn called that last provision a gimmick that would charge companies earlier in the process of paying their quarterly taxes, without really raising any new money.

"It violates all aspects of integrity and honesty," he said.

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