I find Sen. Campfield's challenge one that has real possibilities to show the disconnect between the senator and those Tennesseans who are struggling with the harsh reality of this economy.
I can see for his response to your paper that Sen. Campfield does not understand the mechanics of the unemployment system or the requirements to apply for this benefit.
I would suggest the following:
A neutral third party to monitor all disbursements and expenditures made during his benefit period.
A 1/12th assessment of all current monthly expenses incurred by Senator Campfield, to include all insurances and mortgages, credit cards, utilities, or other incurred monthly debts.
Sen. Campfield should agree to go through the two-week waiting period before benefits are approved, and benefits should be paid as proscribed by regulations, not in a monthly amount.
The Senator should agree to live completely on the unemployment benefit, and not use accrued saving, escrow accounts, credit cards, or other investment.
In other words, the Senator should agree to "experience" unemployment as the "average applicant" in Tennessee does, and not in the make-believe world he would create.
Thanks for your work!
Ed. Note: In a Nov. 5 Daily Pulse blog post, writer Cari Wade Gervin challenged Lt. Gov. Ron Ramsey to live on $300 a week after he said unemployment benefits are an "addicting lifestyle." In his own blog response, Sen. Campfield vowed to pick up the challenge, "No problem." The catch is that Metro Pulse would have to pay him for the month. Our accountants are skeptical.