Senate deal would extend long-term jobless benefits
March 13th, 2014
05:09 PM ET
7 years ago

Senate deal would extend long-term jobless benefits

(CNN) - A group of 10 U.S. senators has reached a deal to extend federal benefits to the chronically unemployed for five months, a development one negotiator called a "bipartisan breakthrough."

Five Republicans have signed on to the $10 billion measure, effectively meaning it should clear the Democratic-led chamber. A vote is not expected until after next week's recess and prospects for passage in the House are uncertain.

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The recession-era program that extended jobless benefits for millions of Americans expired at the end of last year.

Efforts to renew it since, even for a short period of time, have fallen short due wrangling over new spending.

Some Republicans also 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 any extension.

The new effort would cover benefits for five months and be retroactive to December 28, when the previous program expired.

To cover its costs, proponents said Congress would tweak federal pension law to save money and increase revenues.

It would also end unemployment insurance for anyone whose adjusted gross income in the preceding year was $1 million or more.

"There are a lot of good people looking for work and I am pleased we're finally able to reach a strong, bipartisan consensus to get them some help," said Sen. Jack Reed, a Rhode Island Democrat.

"We're not at the finish line yet, but this is a bipartisan breakthrough," he added.

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

Filed under: Congress • Senate • unemployment
soundoff (132 Responses)
  1. Me



    Since all of you democrat liberal "progressives" constantly demean, diminish and degrade those of us in the south or who live in red states, can we secede from the Obamanation this country has become?
    Sure- you're the "taker" states. Saying that however, you might want to read up on American History- say, circa 1850-1870. The future wouldn't look too rosy for you faux revolutionaries of a century and a half ago.
    It is so funny you liberals always bring this up, 6 out of the top 10 states are red, wow barely over half but guess who the top state is??????? A BLUE STATE!!! New Mexico is the top taker and they are VERY BLUE!!! NO INTEGRITY, you people have NONE, barely over half of the top ten and the top is BLUE!!! LMFAO

    March 13, 2014 05:20 pm at 5:20 pm |
  2. ELMO

    No more, enough already.

    March 13, 2014 05:25 pm at 5:25 pm |
  3. Brenda

    I was unaware that St Patricks Day was a federal holiday.

    March 13, 2014 05:25 pm at 5:25 pm |
  4. themoi

    If they haven't found anything by now, 5 months is not going to help. At the end of 5 months they will still be unemployed and want more money again.

    March 13, 2014 05:25 pm at 5:25 pm |
  5. sammy750

    Speaker Boehner has said he will not allow a vote on the bill because the Tea Party is against it.

    March 13, 2014 05:26 pm at 5:26 pm |
  6. Gurgyl

    -–they better pass instead of sending Tax dollar to Ukraine, Crimea, Uganda, Pakistan etc...this nation needs strong EDUCATION–don't care if you go to India to get educated, but, I beg you get educated first!!!!!

    March 13, 2014 05:44 pm at 5:44 pm |
  7. Whome

    I for one am not looking for a handout by way of an extension, I'll take another job thank you.

    March 13, 2014 05:46 pm at 5:46 pm |
  8. Dale

    Why create jobs where we can pay people to not work.

    March 13, 2014 05:47 pm at 5:47 pm |
  9. Vera Radziszewski

    Why wait until after a recess??? Do they really need to take that break? People need the money NOW !!! The Senate should take their recess AFTER they vote on this bill so people can get the help they need.

    March 13, 2014 05:50 pm at 5:50 pm |
  10. Larry38363

    The right wing has just become one anti-Christian organization spreading lies and hate everywhere!

    March 13, 2014 05:52 pm at 5:52 pm |
  11. Warren

    The law should be retro to the date the extended benefits were cut off.

    March 13, 2014 05:54 pm at 5:54 pm |
  12. Uncle Sam

    Obomination: You think you really have a president, butcha you really don't.

    March 13, 2014 05:57 pm at 5:57 pm |
  13. Ralph

    Well, it is difficult for Democrats to buy the votes of the terminally unemployed coach potatoes unless they continually extend unemployed benefits. What's the standard now? 6 years of unemployment and counting? The underclass paid to not work so they'll vote for their local Democrat? It's no surprise that such persons will remain unemployed as long as they receive benefits. After all, why work as a mall cop for 25K when the Democrats will pay 22K unemployment benefits and welfare?

    And thanks to Marsh Obama they don't even have to perform any workfare.

    March 13, 2014 05:59 pm at 5:59 pm |
  14. Gloria in NW

    How mean spirited and selfish some of these responses are. I am reminded a lot lately of a remark heard in passing: We constantly reward the extremely wealthy for the mere fact of being wealthy – tax breads for shipping jobs overseas, etc - but we buy the proposition that the poor, and now the disenfranchised middle class - must be constantly whipped and punished even more because they are "the takers" and "lazy." How did we get to be so stupid?

    March 13, 2014 06:01 pm at 6:01 pm |
  15. wjm980

    Isn't it funny how the libs scream and squawk over Republicans trying to kill Obamacare over and over, while they have no problem resurrecting an extension of unemployment benefits (benefits they agreed to kill, and Barry signed) over and over.

    March 13, 2014 06:01 pm at 6:01 pm |
  16. Sniffit

    "Senate deal would extend long-term jobless benefits"

    That's good...because the House GOP/Teatrolls behavior and lack of initiative and action on creating jobs is going to extend joblessness.

    March 13, 2014 06:01 pm at 6:01 pm |
  17. Ryan in Texas

    If they can find money so easily, why waste it on paying people not to work?
    We are no longer in a recession.
    Illegals still come here to work.
    Here's an irony: the number of illegals here is roughly the same as the number of jobs we need.
    Coincidence? Or reality?
    Wait, let me guess – that work is beneath you. OK Princess, you just live off the taxpayers instead.

    March 13, 2014 06:02 pm at 6:02 pm |
  18. Josh

    "Senate deal would extend long-term jobless benefits" Of course it would! Let's give the bums money for the rest of their lazy lives!!

    March 13, 2014 06:03 pm at 6:03 pm |
  19. shawn l

    Go ahead and secede. You can take your fair share of the debt, and the knowledge that the southern states have received more in federal funds than they have paid each year.

    March 13, 2014 06:04 pm at 6:04 pm |
  20. Dona

    Yes!!!! why wait till recess??? these people need the money Now!! I agree w/ Vera, they can wait to take their recess. VOTE NOW! Everyday these people are hurting, imangine the poor kids. what if this was one of their family members?? DON'T WAIT please!!

    March 13, 2014 06:11 pm at 6:11 pm |
  21. Jonjojr

    lets continue to support the lazy America. It is not my fault that people are not utilizing the service that we provide so that they can improve their skills. Stop this none sense, eventually they have to go to work, or we will go deeper in debt supporting the "unemployed"

    March 13, 2014 06:11 pm at 6:11 pm |
  22. Name. Ralph

    It is not the Democrat party It is the Democratic party. If you keep insisting on using Democrat party then your party I'd the Republic party.

    March 13, 2014 06:12 pm at 6:12 pm |
  23. Gail me

    More bills for the overtaxed middle class. The rich live it up enjoying small real tax percentage and the poor live off the middle class. Democrats take from the middle class and give to the poor, Republicans take from the middle class to support the extremely wealthy. Neither party is good for this country.

    March 13, 2014 06:14 pm at 6:14 pm |
  24. Mark

    But not actually have a way to pay for it.

    Obamacare killed jobs. deal with it

    March 13, 2014 06:15 pm at 6:15 pm |
  25. Gail me

    You going to pay for it Vera?

    March 13, 2014 06:15 pm at 6:15 pm |
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