WASHINGTON – Last night Rep. Jim Cooper (TN-05) released the following statement after Tennessee Governor Bill Lee announced he will opt Tennesseans out of expanded unemployment benefits: 
“Why would Gov. Lee take $300 a week from unemployed Tennesseans? To force them to go back to work, even if they are sick, they have no child care, or there are no jobs for them? 
“I voted to give Tennesseans this help during the pandemic, but Gov. Lee is taking it away. Is that how he would want to be treated? Is he obeying the Golden Rule? What would Jesus do?” 
The American Rescue Plan Act included an extra $300 per week in unemployment benefits for those currently out of work while we fight the COVID-19 pandemic. Cooper voted for the bill, which was the second that included these benefits passed by Congress.