Senate fails to advance unemployment bill
February 6th, 2014
02:42 PM ET
8 months ago

Senate fails to advance unemployment bill

Washington (CNN) - A Democratic proposal to continue long term unemployment benefits failed Thursday to get the 60 votes needed to clear a procedural hurdle in the Senate despite support from some Republicans.

It was defeated 58 to 40. Four Republicans voted with Democrats in favor of the measure that would have extended for three months benefits that expired in December.

The outcome leaves in doubt the prospects for extending the payments to people who are chronically out of work. Bipartisan negotiators have worked for several weeks to reach agreement but they haven't been able to bridge their differences.

Democrats insisted they have bent over backwards to address GOP concerns, including offsetting the costs and allowing votes on a handful of Republican amendments to the bill. They say Republicans fundamentally oppose extending the benefits any further.

Some Republicans have argued the extended benefits are a disincentive for people to find jobs and have wanted to tie reforms to the unemployment insurance program to the extension.

Republican negotiators wanted to vote on more amendments than Democrats were willing to accept and also wanted to repeal a reduction in cost of living increases for retired military personnel that was imposed as part of a recent budget agreement.

Recent national polling indicated strong majority support for extending long term unemployment benefits.


Filed under: Congress • Senate
soundoff (146 Responses)
  1. SS

    Wow, my feelings are soo hurt, I really needed this to pay my rent and utilities. Help me Heavenly Father

    February 6, 2014 03:14 pm at 3:14 pm |
  2. Namejackie hill

    What is the long term unployed going to do? Iworked for over forty years got laid off .I can't get food stamps ,have no money to keep gas in car to look for job and might not have a car much longer. I will be voting this.year to make sure the people in Washington don't have a job.

    February 6, 2014 03:14 pm at 3:14 pm |
  3. ProtectAmericanJobs

    The ONLY REAL FIX for our great country is to RAISE REVENUE, by Bringing Back Businesses and Jobs to TAX-PAYING AMERICAN CITIZENS.

    Unfortunately most of our politicians are joke – Only it's not so funny, because over the past several decades, all they've been doing is screwing the American people, by stalling, spending, removing protections and allowing illegal aliens to continue to pour in and American jobs and industry to pour out, and all while collecting their American tax-payer funded pay checks, benefits and whatever else they get on the side from their various lobbyist friends.

    It seems to me that over the last 2-3 decades that both parties were always able to distract and polarize voters with insignificant peripheral social issues like gay marriage and abortion, which got most voters so caught up in the BS that they lost sight of the bigger picture.

    We'd really all be better off by just cutting through the BS and all the my team vs your team name calling nonsense and really focus on America and improving the future of the American people.

    Once they're elected, our leaders should be working together for the good of the our country and our citizens by using combinations of the best ideas from both sides versus just trying to make the other side look bad so they lose the next election. – How's that been working?

    All the nonsense just allows the puppet-masters to continue to do what's best for them at the expense of the American people while we're polarized and distracted.

    But, let's face it – Neither party is actually running our country – Powerful puppet-masters play both sides to make sure that they get what they want. Unfortunately what they want is not usually in the best interest of the majority of the American people. (American citizens)

    Foreign Lobbyists here in the US promote sending US jobs to countries like China, where they work for slave wages, no benefits, no OSHA safety standards or no real environment regulations. It also doesn't help us compete when these company's factories are subsidized by China's communist government. Just check out the current Chinese extreme pollution issues – We all live in the same world, but not every country plays by the same rules.

    The so called "Global Market Place" is not a level playing field. Companies may have made higher profits by "out sourcing", but they've been putting middle class Americans who are a good part of the world's customer base out of work.

    The American people need American leaders who will start putting some sensible measures in place to stem the tide or this is going to continue to have a devastating effect on the United States of America and the American people.

    Aren't there at least a handful of these powerful puppet-masters that are fellow Americans with enough of a conscience, guts and loyalty to America and their fellow Americans to start trying to turn this trend around?

    If there aren't any, we're screwed.

    The bottom line is that "Our Government" has to protect domestic industry and the jobs that those industries provide. If they do that, the rest will take care of itself.

    The so called "Global Market Place" is not a level playing field. Companies may have made higher profits by "outsourcing", but they've been putting middle class Americans who are a good part of the world's customer base out of work.

    Bringing manufacturing back to the US not only gives jobs to the US citizens who would be working in those manufacturing facilities, but to the people that would be working in the businesses that would spring up all around them. This should also include the safe harvesting, production and distribution of our own natural energy here in the USA, rather than paying for fuel from countries where they hate us. Let's keep that money and those jobs here in the US.

    The lack of businesses and good jobs in the USA is what's really going to rob us, our children, grandchildren and great grandchildren of the potential of a prosperous or even decent future.

    It's all happened because, over the last 25-years, our government has allowed our country's industries to get sucked out to China, India, Mexico, etc and allowed illegal aliens and H-1B foreigners to come into our country and take away tax-paying Americans jobs and drive down domestic prices and wages.

    That's where our government leaders have to step up and put some sensible measures and incentives in place to keep jobs here in the USA or the real economy and infrastructure of the country we love will be destroyed along with the future of the American people.

    Nowadays it's obviously not about being either lazy or uneducated as many try to profess, but about wages, expenses and regulations that are not even remotely close to the wages, expenses and regulations in our country.

    Regardless of what the Free-Traitors keep trying to sell us, we can see what's real. The American People need to just trust their own instincts, common sense and what they've seen actually going on all around them versus all of the nonsense that the free-traitors are still trying to sell us.

    The ONLY REAL FIX for our great country is to RAISE REVENUE, by Bringing Back Businesses and Jobs to TAX-PAYING AMERICAN CITIZENS.

    The American People need Our Leaders to start remembering that they are elected by the Citizens of the United States of America to represent the interests of those citizens and the country itself.

    They are NOT elected by or to represent the Global Market Place, Lobbyist or Foreign citizens!

    February 6, 2014 03:17 pm at 3:17 pm |
  4. SH

    What happens next?

    February 6, 2014 03:17 pm at 3:17 pm |
  5. xray vision

    The Koch brothers said no, so no it is. We simply cant continue to let them run our country. The writings on the wall, vote them out while you still have one.

    February 6, 2014 03:18 pm at 3:18 pm |
  6. Terry

    I can't believe what I just watched on Cspan..Losing by 1 vote? These republicans need to get off their high horses and come back down to our level. Take away their self appointed raises, expense accounts, insurance and all their benefits and see how fast they react! Let them live day to day the way we do. It's a disgrace when they can give milllions to a study on catfish, millions to a college that has a 6% graduation rate, or millions sent to other countries when people in their own country are suffereing, going hungry, and losing their homes. Shame on them...Shame, shame, shame!!!

    February 6, 2014 03:18 pm at 3:18 pm |
  7. Nameangel

    Can't we vote them "Republicans" out of office!!!!! This is very sad..

    February 6, 2014 03:20 pm at 3:20 pm |
  8. Kinda

    Now that I can't pay my cell phone and my car..How will employers contact me?

    February 6, 2014 03:20 pm at 3:20 pm |
  9. jeff

    well I have been unemployed since last April, before that I was in law enforcement and was there for almost 7 years. I have worked all my life and had to leave law enforcement due to a injury. Now after looking for a job since April I have been trying to get my RN degree while still looking for a job, the republicans are playing games good luck on the next elections, crime will be on the rise, and if you think the 1.3 million unemployed is a lot every week peoples state unemployment is running out so the extended unemployment rate is goanna skyrocket within the next month or two. keep your head up Americans just because we have senators with their heads in the asses and want to play games with peoples lives just remember to vote next time......by the way I am a democrat ,but I am very disappointed and ashamed at the republicans that have turned their backs on the American people for there own party.

    February 6, 2014 03:20 pm at 3:20 pm |
  10. just saying

    democrats are just trying to turn extended unemployment benefits into a new short term welfare system. time for people to take jobs and get off the public dole. our kids have to eat too you know.

    February 6, 2014 03:20 pm at 3:20 pm |
  11. xray vision

    There simply is no mercy, this us class warfare, the gop blames the poor. How exactly does a poor person wage financial warfare?

    February 6, 2014 03:21 pm at 3:21 pm |
  12. Vance

    I hope that Obama can step up to the plate and help these poor unemployed people out. I will be honest, I am not a huge fan of Obama but if he can pull this off, it will go a long way for this upcoming election. I am ashamed of my party. I feel guilty just being a Republican right now! What a disaster for Republicans. I can't believe I'm about to say this but I am going to register for the first time in my life as a Democrat. I am totally ashamed of the GOP right now. This should get more press than anything today!

    February 6, 2014 03:21 pm at 3:21 pm |
  13. Pat

    The dems control the senate.....

    February 6, 2014 03:21 pm at 3:21 pm |
  14. NameRenee

    Don't blame Harry Rief, because he voted yes to the extension. When are people going to realize that this is a race issue. Congress voted yes to extend EUC 11 timrs when Bush was in office. It is truly sad, while they are still collecting their salaries, the American people are left to do what they have to. Republicans do not care about the American people, instead of complaining, get up and vote in the midterm election. That is the only way your voice will be heard. The president had some really good ideas, but he can not get any done because of these racist Republicans. They only care about the rich (their friends and families). Vote them out of office in November, and then you will see progress. VOTE, VOTE,VOTE!!!!

    February 6, 2014 03:22 pm at 3:22 pm |
  15. soullfire

    Not good Republican strategy bringing attention to themselves as being road blocks to UI in a mid term election year- especially when they want to main focus to be on their stance against Obamacare.

    February 6, 2014 03:23 pm at 3:23 pm |
  16. Grinning Libber

    The regressives have a death wish. LANDSLIDE BLUE!

    February 6, 2014 03:23 pm at 3:23 pm |
  17. smith

    Well, the fraud trolls are out in force over this one..lol

    February 6, 2014 03:24 pm at 3:24 pm |
  18. xray vision

    In a time of record inequality, any attempt to fix it is met with cries of unfair: what the hell do you think unequal means

    February 6, 2014 03:25 pm at 3:25 pm |
  19. Dallas

    This November America vote out every one of these useless obstructionist Republicans both in the House and Senate. They have held this country hostage long enough!

    February 6, 2014 03:25 pm at 3:25 pm |
  20. steve schueneman

    this was the last shot of keeping my wife and 2 kids off the street.i was going into my last tier when they cut off the program.i am owed at thiss time 2500 dollars which would have given me the resources to syrvive until 1 of my applications came back or interviews turned into a job,i have diabetes really bad and my wife has copd and has had neck fusion surgery and can no longer work.i hope the republicans are happy they are putting mor and more people on the site hungry and cold.i would like to see them live a week in our situation.They have no worrys they have a job,food and a roof over there heads.

    February 6, 2014 03:26 pm at 3:26 pm |
  21. Rudy NYC

    I guess somebody forgot to remind the Republicans that many veterans, and their families, need these benefits, too.

    February 6, 2014 03:27 pm at 3:27 pm |
  22. faye

    Ditto on Scott green's comment - I have no income and have worked for 40 years and am worried sick about paying utilities and my mortgage - I will be 61 this month . Happy birthday to me -ha. Sad sad times. I am voting everyone out come election time

    February 6, 2014 03:27 pm at 3:27 pm |
  23. Mike

    Good for the GOP for standing their ground! This is not a lifetime program. It use to be 26 weeks and should revert back to that!

    February 6, 2014 03:27 pm at 3:27 pm |
  24. Vishnu

    The President has said time and time again that the economy has improved and we are on our way back to economic prosperity.

    It's time for these people to go back to work.

    February 6, 2014 03:29 pm at 3:29 pm |
  25. AmericanCitizen

    IF IT IS BALANCING A TRILLION DOLLAR BUDGET THAT EXCLUDES MILLIONS OF HUNGRY AND HOMELESS AMERICAN CITIZENS AND CHILDREN, HOW CAN THIS CONGRESS CALL ITSELF A JUST REPRESENTATIVE OF THIS NATION'S PEOPLE? It can not say that at all. President Obama spoke of "having a pen." When would NOW be a good time to find and use it?

    February 6, 2014 03:29 pm at 3:29 pm |
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