December 4th, 2009
04:19 PM ET
4 years ago

Congress moves to extend jobless benefits

NEW YORK ( - Lawmakers in both the House and Senate introduced bills this week to push the deadline to apply for unemployment benefits to as far back as 2011.

Congress last month passed a record-long extension of federally paid benefits, but the law only helps those who exhaust their lifelines by year's end. So while unemployment benefits now run as long as 99 weeks, depending on the state, not everyone will receive checks for that long a stretch.

If the deadline is not extended beyond Dec. 31, one million jobless Americans will lose their benefits in January. Some three million people will stop receiving checks by March, according to the National Employment Law Project.

Some 9 million people currently depend on jobless benefits. The government reported Friday that 10% of Americans are out of work and more than a third have been unemployed for at least six months.

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soundoff (10 Responses)
  1. Party Purity will never bring Political Power!

    This must be extended. 3 million unemployed without a way to feed their families after March is not acceptable.

    Tax this working lib "socialist" 1 percent to help pay for those who need during this dismal time in our history.

    We cannot abandon these families and allow them to fend for themselves.

    Afterall, there are republiklan cons out there that would approve of letting them starve as long as big business does not have to pay more in unemployment taxes. Of course, if they do starve that would take care of the millions without health insurance as well.

    Dems call it compassion, cons call it "thinning the herd".

    December 4, 2009 05:16 pm at 5:16 pm |
  2. Right wingnuts are the darlings of dementia

    Even if Obama can get the jobless below 1%, the idiot wingnuts will claim it is a total failure.

    December 4, 2009 05:19 pm at 5:19 pm |
  3. John, Brooklyn, NY

    Good HEAVENS what took them so long!!!?

    December 4, 2009 05:20 pm at 5:20 pm |
  4. KELLY

    The future looks very, very bleak for me. Out of work, losing everything. . . . can't seem to stop it.

    December 4, 2009 05:25 pm at 5:25 pm |

    Yes, should the unemployment benefits not be extended, the lowly
    will be out of a paycheck and HEALTH INSURANCE BENEFITS, affecting their homes and their WHOLE FAMILIES HEALTH NEEDS!

    That would also mean MORE FORCLOSURES!

    What makes me angry is that the Republicans and some Democrats
    don't care because the are unaware that most of these people are
    some of the hardest working people in America!!!

    Republicans, and some Democrats do NOT want to continue with
    Medicare, Social Security, Unemployment, and HEALTH CARE

    Those same Politicians have voted in the past to Privatize Social
    Security and love to say MEDICARE is running out. Well, what I
    have to say about that is WHAT DID YOU DO WITH THE MONEY

    Our politicians have sadly "misrepresented", "mishandled" and
    "stole" our money!!!! for their own prosperity and other dumb ideas.

    December 4, 2009 05:26 pm at 5:26 pm |
  6. Baby Boomer


    December 4, 2009 05:31 pm at 5:31 pm |
  7. jeff jackson, alabama

    If an unskilled person can find a job in most towns
    why can't a skilled worker find the same jobs?
    Who says someone used to earning 100,000+
    a year doesn't have to settle for less when the chips
    are down ?
    Who says if a person thinks they are above taking
    a lower paying job they can live on the tax payers
    for 99 weeks ?
    It's common knowledge that a huge percent of
    people on unemployment could be working if
    they wanted to.
    I meet people on a regular basis who draw
    unemployment and most joke about how easy
    it is!!!

    December 4, 2009 05:31 pm at 5:31 pm |
  8. Mark

    I was behind a lady at the grocery store last week. Her basket had two cases of beer and two bottles of whiskey. Apparently the cashier knew this lady because she looked at all the booze and asked her if she had finally found a job.

    The lady replied that her and her boyfriend had just found out that their unemployment benefits had been extended for 99 weeks! Then she told the cashier "IT WILL BE TWO YEARS BEFORE WE HAVE TO LOOK FOR A JOB NOW!!!!!"

    That's a democrat for you!

    Is this change you can believe in?

    December 4, 2009 05:37 pm at 5:37 pm |
  9. Rickster

    The number of Americans identifying themselves as Democrats fell by nearly two percentage points in November. Added to declines earlier in the year, the number of Democrats in the nation has fallen by five percentage points during 2009.

    December 4, 2009 05:40 pm at 5:40 pm |
  10. gt

    get the banks to lend money ,,,there is your problem

    December 4, 2009 05:42 pm at 5:42 pm |