Hillary Clinton urges extending benefits for jobless
December 31st, 2013
04:32 PM ET
4 months ago

Hillary Clinton urges extending benefits for jobless

(CNN) - Hillary Clinton is weighing in on an issue that's a top priority right now for the White House and congressional Democrats: Unemployment insurance.

"10 years ago I was proud to begin working on bipartisan efforts to save unemployment insurance. Let's do it again quickly in this new year," the former Secretary of State and potential Democratic presidential contender tweeted Tuesday.

Long-term unemployment benefits for 1.3 million Americans expired Saturday, after Congress failed to pass an extension. Most Democrats blame congressional Republicans for letting the benefits expire. Many Republicans argue that the benefits are no longer needed as the economy has improved and the unemployment level has dropped.

Democratic Sen. Jack Reed of Rhode Island and GOP Sen. Dean Heller of Nevada are co-sponsoring a bill that would reinstate the benefits. Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid says he'll take up that measure once the Senate returns at the beginning of next week.

Extending unemployment insurance and raising the minimum wage are two issues near the top of the Democrats' agenda as part of their emphasis on income equality heading into the 2014 midterm elections. The issues are also very important to those on the left, who are a key electorate in the Democratic presidential primaries and caucuses.

Two weeks ago, after complaints by liberals in Congress that an extension of unemployment benefits was left out of the bipartisan budget agreement, Clinton tweeted "What happens to kids in families cut from unemployment insurance & food stamps? They're #2SmallToFail & deserve an equal chance to succeed."

(The "2SmallToFail" reference is a nod to her program at the Clinton Foundation for boosting education for young children)

After four years of rarely weighing in on domestic issues as she served as America's top diplomat, Clinton is increasingly stating her positions on such issues. If the former First Lady and Senator from New York decides to make a second run for the White House, she would instantly become the overwhelming front runner for the 2016 Democratic presidential nomination.

- CNN's Elise Labott and Jim Acosta contributed to this report.

Filed under: Hillary Clinton
soundoff (42 Responses)
  1. Gurgyl

    These GOP thugs do not want to extend benefits, these idiots want to see Obama 20 years down the road as bad president. Nation is wide awake to kick these GOP animals in 2014. They don't want healthcare, they want Guns, wars–hiliburton contracts. USA better kick these animals out.

    December 31, 2013 04:37 pm at 4:37 pm |
  2. Legalized Theft

    "10 years ago I was proud to begin working on bipartisan efforts to save unemployment insurance. Let's do it again quickly in this new year," the former Secretary of State and potential Democratic presidential contender tweeted Tuesday.

    What the heck is this old bag talking about? People still get 26 weeks of unemployment benefits. The unemployment hammock has been folded up and put away after 5years and a quarter trillion dollars was spent. Or she will now admitting the economy still stinks and there are no jobs?

    December 31, 2013 04:39 pm at 4:39 pm |
  3. Smitty

    What difference does it make Hilly??? Why don't you get another photo op with Ambassador Stevens coffin ???

    December 31, 2013 04:41 pm at 4:41 pm |
  4. Marie MD

    Sorry Hillary. It there nothing good coming from the teaklan side. It's all for themselves or their super rich friends.
    The rest of us? Just die quickly is their mantra!

    December 31, 2013 04:43 pm at 4:43 pm |
  5. norma jean

    ONCE AGAIIN WE SEE WHO CARES FOR THE LITTLE PEOPLE........A DEMOCRAT....!!!!!!!!.....If you haven't been there....out of a job you've held for years....suddenly you need help ....new jobs hard to find because of vast numbers of out-of-work looking.... if you haven;t been there you have no right to express an opinion.....it is sickening and emotionally painful......been there ..done that!!!!!..................GO FOR IT HILLARY.......we,the little people are behind you now and in the very near future when it's time for an election!!!!!!!!

    December 31, 2013 04:47 pm at 4:47 pm |
  6. Silence DoGood

    @legalized theft "What the heck is this old bag talking about?"
    Women voters take note of what conservatives call a woman who gets a little too powerful.
    Also google for "slap hillary" for the violence-against-women game version.

    December 31, 2013 05:00 pm at 5:00 pm |
  7. Randy, San Francisco

    Compared to the cold cold hearted Republican Tea Partiers, Hillary Clinton is an angel of mercy, compassion, and hope.

    December 31, 2013 05:12 pm at 5:12 pm |
  8. DENNA

    What in the world is wrong conservatives. Do they really hate poor people that much. Hello! There aren't enough jobs. Rand Paul and his idiot son should get a clue!!!!

    December 31, 2013 05:25 pm at 5:25 pm |
  9. truth be told

    What difference does it make Hillary?! What difference DOES IT MAKE?!

    December 31, 2013 05:29 pm at 5:29 pm |
  10. current state of the union

    The Republicans kill me, in one breath they complain about unemployment, then when asked to extend benefits, its not a problem, hypocracy at its best.I keep wondering just how dumb you have to be to vote for that bunch of liars, wow!

    December 31, 2013 05:33 pm at 5:33 pm |
  11. Don in albuquerque

    @smitty–I hope you realize that you and those like you, by being able to totally ignore thousands upon thousands of needless deaths in the Middle East, you are turning these four deaths into a joke.

    December 31, 2013 05:35 pm at 5:35 pm |
  12. smith

    @Gurgyl-No one has wait twenty years, Obama is already a bad president.

    December 31, 2013 05:40 pm at 5:40 pm |
  13. smith

    @Gurgyl-No one has to wait twenty years, Obama is already a bad president.

    December 31, 2013 05:43 pm at 5:43 pm |
  14. Gurgyl

    @smith, yes, he is bad because stock market is proving economy, He is bad GDP is way up than Bush the thush Era, he is bad–no wars, no Iran contra affairs, no Haliburton loots–he is bad for stopping pre-existing patients covered, he is bad for getting Bin Laden, he is bad for passing ACA Law which 2 million people enrolled, he is bad to end Iraq war–he is bad for not being white, nonsense, know you are not in Stone Age–though you are stoned under GOP thugs hallucination in Fox-Den crab.

    December 31, 2013 05:54 pm at 5:54 pm |
  15. Tim

    Libs, unfortunately for you, the country is done with 1.something term democratic senators who want to be Prez... Especially one who only got the senate seat because it was reserved for the former 1st Lady. As first lady her hillary care was a failure, as senator she sponsored no noteworthy legislation, as secretary of state she was executor of a FAILED foreign policy including but not limited to the Benghazi disaster by lowering security at the embassy... Has she actually ever accomplished anything ?

    December 31, 2013 05:55 pm at 5:55 pm |
  16. barryinlasvegas

    CNN – the only one carrying this stupid story. Who cares what Hilary is urging. She's not even in the public eye and until she announces she is running for president – why report what she says – it's all politics on her part anyway.

    December 31, 2013 06:38 pm at 6:38 pm |
  17. gahh

    Maybe these people wouldn't need unemployment benefits, if her husband hadn't signed NAFTA. How many millions of jobs has this country lost, because of Clinton?

    December 31, 2013 06:54 pm at 6:54 pm |
  18. Rick McDaniel

    Let's NOT!

    Let's ask the regime to create some real jobs for needy people, and stop trying to put everyone on the public dole!

    December 31, 2013 07:16 pm at 7:16 pm |
  19. geggyg

    @ Legalized Theft
    For a lot of Americans it is very hard for them to get a job , especially people over 50yr old , no matter what skills they have .
    Even with a fairly strong economy,in Australia we have the same problem , many (not all ) business are reluctant to hire people over 50yo , even at 40yr it can be a problem . We don't have time limits on the unemployment benefit, but do have work for the dole schemes and strict job search requirements

    December 31, 2013 07:19 pm at 7:19 pm |
  20. Cosmo

    Hill, you and your rich Democrat friends can pay for it.

    December 31, 2013 07:26 pm at 7:26 pm |
  21. Richard

    Some of these people have been on assistance for over 2 YEARS. How long till they should be forced to go on welfare?

    December 31, 2013 07:36 pm at 7:36 pm |
  22. truth be told

    Randy, San Francisco
    Compared to the cold cold hearted Republican Tea Partiers, Hillary Clinton is an angel of mercy, compassion, and hope.

    Right, let's not use any reason, logic, fiscal responsibillity, just emotion. This is all Democrats ever do, try to paint their opponents with emotionally negative steroetypes while demonstrating zero reason, logic and fiscal ability. Where will the $26 BILLION come from to pay for it? They offer NOTHING in response. When will the extended unemployment hammock end? They offer NO RESPONSE. It is how you end up with $17 TRILLION in debt and no plan on how to repay it.

    Democrats can't stop spending money we don't have because like a person hooked on shopping and spending, they think they and everybody else will simply die if they stop spending endless. Democrats have a serious psychological addiction they must overcome if this country is to ever become fiscally stable and debt free.

    December 31, 2013 07:38 pm at 7:38 pm |
  23. Thomas

    As of today she is running for President .

    Happy New Year everybody , All the best to us all in 2014 !

    December 31, 2013 08:07 pm at 8:07 pm |
  24. NH

    Here's a crazy thought, why don't you try to get people employed. Oh wait, that's not part of the handout party's "keep people dependent on govt" philosophy.

    December 31, 2013 08:22 pm at 8:22 pm |
  25. Evergreen

    Federal unemployment benefits is actually in the form of loans from the Federal Government to States that meet certain requirements ( Federal Unemployment Act). The money will eventually be paid back, with interest, unlike all the foreign aid thats sent out of the country.

    December 31, 2013 08:39 pm at 8:39 pm |
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