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House Rejects Stand-Alone Unemployment Insurance Bill

June 29, 2010 - by Donny Shaw

The House today failed to pass a stand-alone bill to extend unemployment insurance benefits (H.R. 5618). The final vote was 261-155. 277 votes (a 2/3rds majority of those present and voting) were needed under the suspension of the rules procedure that was used by the Democrats in order to avoid Republican obstruction tactics.

The full roll call details are not yet available online, but I will update this post with a link as soon as they are. Full roll call details can be found here.

Republicans opposed the bill because it’s costs, approximately $34 billion, were not offset with new revenue. Since the financial crisis of 2008, Congress has routinely passed UI extension bills without offsets because benefit payments to help the unemployed are considered “emergency spending” and are not subject to pay-as-you-go rules.

The bill that was rejected today would have extended UI benefit payments, which expired in late May, until November 30, 2010. Without the extension, some 1.7 million unemployed people will lose their payment by Jul 3. Benefits for the unemployed will continue to run out at a rate of about 200,000 per week until an extension is signed into law.

This leaves Democrats with basically two options for passing an unemployment insurance extension before the July 4 recess — find a revenue offset to pay for the costs that can pass through both the Senate and the House (which may be what Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid [D, NV] is talking to Republicans about today on the Senate side), or try again in the House under normal rules and see if they can overcome Republican dilatory tactics and poison-pills to pass it with a simple majority.

UPDATE: Arthur Delaney at Huffington Post reports on the next step:

Bill cosponsor Rep. Sander Levin (D-Mich.) said Democrats will return to the measure on Wednesday, when it will face a much lower simple-majority 219-vote threshold. “It will pass,” said Levin, who added that he is coordinating with his counterparts in the Senate.

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Displaying 121-150 of 194 total comments.

  • lonestar2020 06/29/2010 11:54am

    Go to Change.Org & sign the Extension Petension.It is time to clean house come November.The Stock Market took the largest nose dive in the entire year before this vote occurred based on the already actions of Republicans killing the unemployment bill on June 5th.I am no longer Republican,everyone of those in Congress will be to blame for the Depression we will be in.If they are in office now,vote them out.Everyone call until their phone lines overload,their emails overload,start having peaceful rallies in front of their offices.The Republicans have just lost any hopes of being re-elected,I now believe they are the party of the CEOs, the Bankers and BP buddies who are for stomping on the poor the make themselves rich & they are hurting America & Americans to help themselves.Dummycrats and Reprukilcans in Congress need to be voted home in November, perhaps let them retire on the oil soaked gulf.Then on top of it,they are proposing increasing taxes, don’t hear them taking pay cuts.

  • Transparent 06/29/2010 12:00pm

    We are headed for a disaster in this country people. What happens when 15 million without jobs cannot pay taxes or ss or medicaid? What happens when we need to feed our kids? and book it bitches, parents will fuck your shit up to take care of their kids! People will take the banks over, fuck gas who needs it? Just get horses and revolvers and overthrow this corrupt gray haired government. I think all the republicans should fucking die in a car crash and be burned alive! My right to freedom of speech fucking shit faces so throw me in jail if you don’t like it asshole! Who was that old ass fuck hump who died a couple days ago? who cares he was a republican. AMERICA! We don’t even own this country anymore I tink China does. Welcome SOCIALISM a present from OBAMA.

  • Comm_reply
    Jonathan_Nicholas 06/29/2010 12:07pm

    Byrd was a Democrat, and SUPPORTED the extension bills.

  • onecent301 06/29/2010 12:01pm

    I just can’t believe this is it. They will have to revisit this after their vacation. There are too many people in the U.S. that are going to lose their homes, cars and not be able to eat. I believe in the power of prayer. We all need to pray and pray hard that congress gets a clue.

  • Comm_reply
    Christine58 06/29/2010 12:36pm

    I believe in the power of prayer too. Lets all pray for each other. There are times when you dont know how or what to pray. I have been there because of this situation. That’s why other Christians need to pray for each other. I do pray for all the unemployed every night. Somemay think this sounds corny, but I don’t think pray will hurt at a desparate time like this.

  • lonestar2020 06/29/2010 12:02pm

    Everyone losing their home…lets go camp at the Republican’s homes and offices. We pay them, so since they voted to make us broke in all stopping unemployment benefits, then we can just go move in one the rooms in their home, eat their food, use their cars, & live in the land of make believe they live in everyday. I guess since the rich bank wants to kick me out of my home and put my family on the street in knowing Republicans are going to vote them another bailout, then I am looking forward to upgraded into living in my Senators Mansion.All this time I thought they were voting against us, when they really want us to live with them. Thanks Republicans, I am calling the movers today and can’t wait to live in your home.

  • Jonathan_Nicholas 06/29/2010 12:08pm

    Candace Millers office (you will get right through.)
    (202) 225-2106

  • Jonathan_Nicholas 06/29/2010 12:09pm

    Pick up the phone!

    Aderholt (202) 225-4876
    Adler (202) 225-4765
    Akin (202) 225-2561
    Austria (202) 225-4324
    Bachman (202) 225-2331
    Bartlett (202) 225-2721
    Bean (202) 225-3711
    Berry (202) 225-4076
    Biggert (202) 225-3515
    Blackburn (202) 225-2811
    Blunt (202) 225-6536
    Boehner (202) 225-6205
    Bonner (202) 225-4931
    Boozman (202) 225-4301
    Boustany (202) 225-2031

    Candace Miller (202) 225-2106

  • JoblessInSF 06/29/2010 12:13pm

    I’m on this site because I’m worried about my own situation, of course, but reading these comments from others has just brought tears to my eyes. I keep thinking about that $800 Billion bailed to the financial industry, which was just “too big to fail” and their executives who need millions in raises to be “incentivised”. They found the money for the banks, they can find the money for us.

    I have been out of work now for over a year and a half, at age 60, and I wondering quite seriously when or how I’ll ever find another job. Like so many people here, I have worked all my life, thought I had a very steady occupation (as law office support staff), and now I’m forced to live on unemployment. The notion that I want this is ludicrous — I want to go back to work which pays (used to pay…) twice as much in take home as I get w/ unemployment.

  • buyandtrade 06/29/2010 12:24pm

    The issue really with this bill is (1) Stimulus or (2) Deficit. Reps want to use Stimulus $ and Dems want to us Deficit without explanation. I say this is irrelevant!!!!!! We funded wars in this country using deficit. We funded Haiti using deficit. ETC. ETC. ETC. We should spend REGARDLESS because this is a National Emergency for the unemployed Americans in this country! Pass the Stand Alone bill and add to the deficit and figure out later how to pay for it….PERIOD!

  • Christine58 06/29/2010 12:26pm

    This is insane! I feel for those of you that say this is making you physically ill. I have been the same way,so stressed that I have felt sick. My husband’s SEB is gone and I have three more weeks for my regular UI claim. My place of employment was closed down and so was my husband’s.We are taking care of my eigth year old twin granddaughters and two of my own children.I was just out today job hunting, not a promising activity. We have foodstamps,but need money to keep things going. The only peace I have comes from the book of Matthew where it says God will meet your needs. I have not heard from my senator lately,so I will send more e-mails. There is another bill S.3520. Is this the same bill this article talks about? I will be prayng for everyone and that we willhave some relief soon.

  • Sniperous 06/29/2010 12:27pm

    Got 3 days worth of food left. Gas is shut off. Water shut off in 2 weeks and electricity shut off in 2 weeks. Gas tank is 1/2 full. All this just in time for 4th of July. Let the recession depression commence.

  • indimom2010 06/29/2010 12:36pm

    They are working on it Sander Levin says it will pass tomorrow……I am praying it does.

  • purdue725 06/29/2010 12:37pm

    Does the government not understand that if the benefits are not extended, what the consequences will be?? there will be more foreclosures, most of us will be behind paying bills, crime rate will go up…arent these politicians scared for their lives? I am praying to God that they pass these benefits cause ALL of us need them to get through this tough year. And let me remind you, we are not in a Great Recession, we are in Depression yet to dip even more…Only God can save us. I encourage each and everyone of you to vote this upcoming election. Vote every SOB out of the office. Put them in unemployment line..why is it that the only rich people or ivy league people can join the congress? what about normal people..why arent we allowed to run? We need some real compassionate people in congress..get rick of these sick people..AMERICA VOTE!!!

  • firestorm145 06/29/2010 12:43pm

    If you are looking for an offset. Quit the war in afghanastan and reduce your salaries Senators. The ones that voted nay, What are you thinking of? You are living high on the hog and we americans are suffering with no jobs, and money and can’t find one I am furious!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • bartenderphoenix 06/29/2010 12:46pm

    I have been on umemployment for about 10 months, I lost my job during department restructuring at an Indianapolis hospital 1 week before I started work on my associates degree. My husband is a disabled veteran of the US Army. I am a mother of 4 and until very recently never recieved public assistance. I lost my benefits the first of june and everything is going into shut off. I can’t afford gas to go to school, buy diapers for my child, or any bills to be paid. All public assistance agencies are over run and back logged so they are no help either. I have worked and paid into the system since I was 16 years old and this is the first time I have ever collected unemployment. I too am unable to sleep and feel sick with worry. My husband and I are both looking for jobs but with his disabliity to deal with and the dry market it is almost impossible out there for us. I don’t understand how they exepct the people to survive when the money that we put in we can’t get out.

  • UIAMERICAN 06/29/2010 12:47pm

    We still have hope. From what I understand they are going to write up a rule and present it to the house tomorrow…The goal tomorrow is to pass it under regular order.

  • lonnienyssa 06/29/2010 1:06pm

    I am sickend by the way we have to live by the laws of 432 people in congress today that voted. How do you tell your children that we have to go to a shelter to live because mommy can’t pay the rent because the Senate is frickin looney tunes? Because those are the phone calls I am making now I got a 3 day notice 2 days ago my only hope was this to pass I am at a loss… I give up!!! I have lost ALL faith and hope in my country.

  • Lanah 06/29/2010 1:06pm
    I’m a 25 year old White female Architect. I put my race because I want to make it known that I now know what so many of the minorities in this country have gone through for decades.My parents, staunch republican’s can NOT believe what’s happening. Why? Well just because it’s happening to their daughter. I will be the first to admit that if I wasn’t going through unemployment they would be along side every Republican and Democrat that has voted against this Extension. I was a part of a firm that laid of 70 Architects over a two years span. It’s been a little over a year and half and guess how many of those 70 have found jobs,,,,2,,,,, that’s it. It’s no longer a situation about people who don’t want to work.I’m working customer service for Best Buy to supplement UI just to make ends meet and UI will end in 3 short weeks.

    Even when I get a job I’m going to remember this time in my life and will never again trust in our government to do whats right.

  • Comm_reply
    jlcarpenter77 06/29/2010 1:38pm

    Lanah, At least your parents are going against the grain of what they have been for so long. I have been out of work since Jan 2010, and also found out two months later I’m expecting my third child. When my UI runs out in a few weeks, my husband and I have no idea how we are going to make it. I’ve actually been considering abortion (and that’s not me). My parents know of our situaiton, yet they are sticking to our guns that us unemployed folk are “making a career out of being unemployed.” I was disgusted with that remark by my mother, whom hasn’t had to work EVER since she married my father and I can’t even stomach the thought of talking to her again after that comment. I’ve applied for hundreds of jobs and have received ONE interview.
    You wait and see—- the crime wave is going to sky rocket! How else are people supposed to live?

  • tah 06/29/2010 1:13pm

    I e-mailed both by state’s Senators yesterday – Hutchison & Cornyn. Neither of them has ever voted in favor of unemployment help.

    At least Hutchison had an Unemployment drop drop to select as the subject of my e-mail. Cornyn, on the other hand, had no such drop down. However, he gave me the option of a picture request as the subject. Yep, Mr. John Cornyn really knows what the people of our state and this country need. Because you can bet every bit of our non-existent unemployment funds are paying for taking, printing and mailing all those photos out to his loving public. trying to shove my rolling eyes back into my head

  • tah 06/29/2010 1:14pm

    I e-mailed both by state’s Senators yesterday – Hutchison & Cornyn. Neither of them has ever voted in favor of unemployment help.

    At least Hutchison had an Unemployment drop drop to select as the subject of my e-mail. Cornyn, on the other hand, had no such drop down. However, he gave me the option of a picture request as the subject. Yep, Mr. John Cornyn really knows what the people of our state and this country need. Because you can bet every bit of our nonexistent unemployment funds are paying for taking, printing and mailing all those photos out to his loving public.

  • dwcstmdznr 06/29/2010 1:23pm

    Don’t just email your own senators, email them all!!!!!!!

  • Comm_reply
    Jonathan_Nicholas 06/29/2010 4:48pm

    Right, and call as well.

    I’m calling anyone I can get through to… no matter where they are.

  • XvxRAINxvX 06/29/2010 1:26pm

    Well I am glad it will pass in the house but the big question is will it pass in the senate were it will most likely be filibustered. When will the madness end?

  • DGalanteNJ 06/29/2010 1:31pm

    This is really pitiful making the unemployed beg for what would be given to 3rd world countries without a blink of a eye. The vote should belong to the people, not to the senators, let the people vote if this should pass. In fact let the people vote on all the bills in congress, that would eliminate a whole lot of needless spending. All the little add ons that they throw in would be out of the question. Thats one way to save money. This country belongs to the people, not the goverment…well it used to anyways!

  • clv01 06/29/2010 1:34pm

    Very sad and frustrating. The House can’t pass unemployment extension. It is highly unlikely, next to impossible to pass the extension before they leave for their vacation. That will at the very least 2 weeks with no unemployment insurance. My family can’t go two weeks. It is obvious that our “representatives” have no idea how dire the situation is for many of us. By the time the “senate” and “house” return to work there will be many, many angry and desperate people out there. God help us all. This could be very bad.

  • Comm_reply
    tah 06/29/2010 1:46pm

    Some of us have been without since early June. When you hit the final tier, money stops every time Congress does not pass an extension even though you still have dollars in your “bucket”

  • kstiffler 06/29/2010 1:36pm

    This is so frustrating!! With every turn Republicians are blocking this from passing. Don’t they get it. If they are looking to make themselves look better come November they better rethink a new strategy because people will remember those who voted to solve this.

  • lonnienyssa 06/29/2010 1:37pm

    The even BIGGER question is will it be able to get passed before the 4th?

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