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Stabenow Calls for Passage of Tier V Unemployment Extension Bill, Lemieux Objects

September 29, 2010 - by Donny Shaw

This afternoon Sen. Debbie Ann Stabenow [D, MI] called for the Senate to pass, under unanimous consent, the “Americans Want to Work Act.” The bill would add a fifth tier of unemployment insurance benefits in states with unemployment rates above 7.5%. The fifth tier would give an additional 20 weeks of benefits to unemployed people who have exhausted all of their available unemployment insurance benefits and have not yet found a job. Estimates differ on how many people would quialify for a fifth tier of benefits, but it’s generally believed to be somewhere around 2 million.

Josh at Senatus, caught the action on the Senate floor:

Senator George LeMieux (R-FL) objected to an attempt by Senator Stabenow to unanimously pass this bill. He said Republican members were unclear as to how much the legislation would cost and how it would be paid for. Senator Stabenow said these unemployment provisions constituted emergency spending.

According to observers on Twitter, LeMieux also claimed that he had “just been handed” the bill and needed more time to review it. The bill has been publicly available for review since August 4th. The unemployment rate in Florida right now is 11.6%; you would think LeMieux would have though to take a look at it by now.

In order to overcome LeMieux’s objection to doing this under unanimous consent, the Democrats would have to put together a cloture petition, file for cloture, wait for the cloture motion to ripen, invoke cloture with 60 votes… and then they would begin the actual debate. David Waldman has more detailed information on how that process works.

UPDATE: Here’s a direct link to video of the floor proceedings in which Stabenow motions to pass S.3706 under unanimous consent and LeMieux objects.

UPDATE 2: Better yet, here’s embeddable video from Stabenow’s YouTube account:

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Displaying 1-30 of 61 total comments.

Jess01869 10/26/2010 1:49pm

I think they should extend the deadline for those who run out after the November 28th deadline or extend it through the new year AND create a Tier 5 for the 99ers. I myself make my final payment request for just $25 on December 5th because $61 was added to my account for some bizarre reason (was not there 4 weeks ago) preventing me from exhausting my benefits before November 28th…so I am 7 days shy of the deadline and yes…only $25 left…wish they could at least divide that amount into my next 2 payment requests before the deadline…makes no sense and I’m about to be homeless unless that deadline does get extended…which I doubt even will…

Kerlynne 10/18/2010 11:13am

Unemployment is mistaken for welfare? I want to stay off welfare!!! I want to work, I try and every day in one form or another!! You are a damn fool if you think that one person that is a 99er or is unemployed for any length of time is mistaking UI for welfare. The fact that is where most of will end up if don’t get a job is sickening. Think then….how many 100’s of thousands will end up on welfare and then where will the economy be A full blown depression!? It is bad enough that the people that I knew that still have jobs treat me like a disease and with pathic looks and hand outs that I have unfortunately take because I need things to continue this drastically reduced lifestyle I continue with. I EARNED these unemployment payments and when the government recognizes our plight and extends our earned UI because WE EARNED IT I will continue to take it, because I don’t want to go on welfare EVER.

comments11660 10/13/2010 4:05am
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in reply to JMac Sep 30, 2010 11:04pm

WOW typical empirical attitude. Kill the Indians so we can have the profits!!! What a hypocrite you are!!! No wonder the rest of the world hates American!!! I’ll bet you’ve NEVER spent one day outside of US borders!!! You are unbelievable!!! When did we stop being our brother’s keepers speaking of India?! Maybe we would be better served forcing corporations to be responsible. Personally I prefer nmeagent’s comments to your hypocrisy at least he tells it like it is “they took our jobs by outsourcing!!!” Can you not read the handwriting on the wall are you so ignorant?!!! Long live the Republic!!! And the U.S. Constitution!!!

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RAYBOB 10/04/2010 4:04am


nmeagent 10/03/2010 1:04pm
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in reply to Amonique Oct 03, 2010 9:28am

“This is money that the american worker pays into.”

This is money that the American worker is forced to pay into. What gives you the right to demand compulsory unemployment insurance?

“Your job is not secure either.”

No job is ever secure. They are always subject to the whims of our employers.

“Someone has unemployment insurance mistaken for welfare.”

It is a form of welfare. Your benefits are not commensurate with what you pay in, especially when benefits are continually extended all to hell in a financial crisis.

“Good luck to you and your family when it happens to you.”

It may. If that happens, it’s my responsibility to make sure I’m fine if that happens and not that of the rest of society.

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Amonique 10/03/2010 9:28am

This is not money that is free. This is money that the american worker pays into. And once the unemployment insurance is disbursed-it is then taxed. So, who are you to say, you are being forced to pay for someone to remain unemployed? Perhaps, once your company experiences the unfortunate circumstances many already have, you too will be hoping for some kind of ‘assistance’.
I absolutely resent the fact that people who are still working act as if tomorrow may not be the last day. Face reality. Your job is not secure either. And once it is gone, who will you look to for support?
Unemployment insurance is not a hand out-it’s paid into and again it is TAXED.
Someone has unemployment insurance mistaken for welfare. Maybe that’s the fight you need to be gearing up for. I find it quite obnoxious that people who still have a job today think themselves to be better than those who have worked paid into this insurance and now need it. Good luck to you and your family when it happens to you.

nmeagent 10/03/2010 8:51am
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in reply to Rationalview Oct 02, 2010 5:59pm

Look, I realize that this is an incredibly difficult situation that you find yourself in. However, that does not justify an extension of a government program. Taxation is theft. You should seek help from one or more of many private charities. If they can’t help you because they lack the resources, they should solicit donations from people like me. I would donate if asked, but I resent your intended expansion of a government program that will confiscate what it needs from me at the point of a gun. If that sort of morality makes me seem ‘superior’ to you, so be it.

Rationalview 10/02/2010 5:59pm

While all of you have so much to say, maybe you should listen – and while you are listening, walk. walk in my shoes as I send in resumes after resumes – check emails and the phone for a possible interview – worry about how i will pay my bills – even food. Don’t be so superior – you never know what tragedy is around the corner for you – it could be cancer or heart disease or you could stub your toe – regardless – it could be that you lose your job – it’s called life and you can never predict what will befall you – so, remember that the next time you bite down on a piece of hard candy and crack your tooth.

nmeagent 10/02/2010 3:54pm
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in reply to beenblue Oct 02, 2010 11:53am

“you always loose your temper when called upon to act in accordance with the dictates of reason.”

That’s funny, I feel quite calm.

“With most men, unbelief in one thing springs from the blind belief in another…”

Do you make unsupported assumptions on a regular basis or is this a special occasion?

“…and I refuse to engage in a battle of wits with an unarmed person, it`s not polite…..”

I think politeness went out the window when you accused me of having Tourette’s, but that’s just my enraged, amateurish opinion I guess.

mouseissue 10/02/2010 1:06pm
in reply to nmeagent Oct 01, 2010 9:11pm


You are right!!!

I know several businesspersons who said that if the Bush tax cuts expire for them, they will not hire any more and most likely have to lay people off to stay profitable.

You can bet many large companies out there will lay off tons of people.
The national unemployment rate could be as high as 15% (maybe more)!!!

At that point, we might see a Tier 5. But it will only delay the inevitable financial destruction of millions of hard working Americans!

mouseissue 10/02/2010 12:59pm
in reply to bugsy166 Sep 30, 2010 1:39pm


If you think those Progressive Dems are any different, you are a fool!

Your last idea has merit. But I would say that if the Pres and Congress spend too much, they get a pay cut. If they don’t over-tax us, they can have a pay raise. But if they want to keep spending money on BS that does not work and tax us more for it, they should pay the bill IN FULL!

mouseissue 10/02/2010 12:55pm
in reply to bugsy166 Sep 30, 2010 1:38pm


Sounds you have an issue with “job outsourcing” to other countries.
It’s one of the top two reasons we can’t find jobs!

If it weren’t so damn expensive for U.S. companies to do business here at home, you would not see near as much job outsourcing.

Why is it so damn expensive to do business here in the U.S.?

1) Ecological Stupidity (e.g. Giving Brazil a $2 billion loan for off-shore oil drilling while stopping ALL of our own). I guess this is Obama’s idea of protecting the planet.

2) Over-Regulation (e.g. The excessive taxes that a business must pay it’s city, county, state, and federal governments. All the licenses and fees businesses have to pay. The excessive amount of rules to do business).

3) Etc., etc., etc..

mouseissue 10/02/2010 12:39pm
in reply to bcarney Sep 29, 2010 4:12pm


Your’re right.

If you are homeless, you don’t go to Home Depot or Lowe’s to by new lawn chairs for your backyard, or a new BBQ, or new sprinkler system, etc..

Food and clothing are about all you will buy (IF you can).
This DOES NOT help the economy at all!!!

mouseissue 10/02/2010 12:34pm
in reply to Aaron92656 Sep 29, 2010 3:54pm


Citibank is one of the Progressives (Dems and Reps) best friends.
If you’re an uber-huge corporation capable of making donations in the million of $$$, they LOVE you! They will even help you get richer in hard times at taxpayer expense!

The American people are seen as “subjects” to be ruled by a Progressive elite think they know-it-all class. Our votes are the only thing that matter to them. And if they keep moving this country away from it’s constitution, our votes will soon not be needed either… THEN WHAT??? Welcome to tyranny my friend with NO WAY OUT!!!

beenblue 10/02/2010 11:53am
in reply to nmeagent Oct 02, 2010 9:01am

These are emotional times in which we are living as I`v stated before, and emotion based politics are volatile, fueled by passion and not by sound reason. Your assumption of my observation in this matter, is of little consequence, as you always loose your temper when called upon to act in accordance with the dictates of reason. With most men, unbelief in one thing springs from the blind belief in another, and I refuse to engage in a battle of wits with an unarmed person, it`s not polite…..

nmeagent 10/02/2010 9:01am
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in reply to beenblue Oct 01, 2010 9:58pm

From what I’ve read, your comments lack substance and tend to be based mostly on emotion. If you don’t agree with that statement, feel free to attempt to prove me wrong.

beenblue 10/01/2010 10:14pm
in reply to JMac Sep 30, 2010 11:04pm

Dear JMac, It`s all sound bites, and borrowed opinions BE COOL, don`t let them get under your skin and remember to vote, hang in there……

beenblue 10/01/2010 9:58pm
in reply to nmeagent Oct 01, 2010 2:09pm

Your temperament is a disease that afflicts amateurs, and your vitriolic criticism causes one to dismiss you as a victim of tourette syndrome. I understand that your trying to come off as an intellectual with your scraps of learning, but your lacking originality, honestly why don`t you try some good judgment instead.

nmeagent 10/01/2010 9:11pm
in reply to jomholt Sep 30, 2010 2:10pm

“There are no jobs!!!!!!And they want to extend the tax credit to the rich???”

If you think there are few jobs now, just wait until those tax cuts expire. That ugly likelihood will hit the remaining job market like a hydrogen bomb.

nmeagent 10/01/2010 9:03pm
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in reply to bugsy166 Sep 30, 2010 1:38pm

You wouldn’t be posting in this forum without Asian manufacturing.

nmeagent 10/01/2010 9:01pm
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in reply to bugsy166 Sep 30, 2010 1:06pm

Okay, let’s say you were to gain the required votes in Congress and Obama signed something containing an extension of unemployment benefits into law. We are trillions of dollars in debt already; where in the hell is the money going to come from, Bugsy? What are you going to tell the millions who remain unemployed indefinitely when the crushing taxes necessary to repay this debt prevent employers from having funds to expand and hire?

I imagine even if you manage this you’ll be back here in several years lamenting evil Republican efforts to block some bill to extend benefits to 499 weeks or something.

nmeagent 10/01/2010 2:09pm
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in reply to JMac Sep 30, 2010 11:04pm

“Which regulations would you like to get rid of?”

Everything that is not explicitly enumerated in Article I Section 8 of the Constitution or is necessary to carry into effect those powers (use the definitions of terms like ‘commerce’ as understood at the time as well).

“Maybe we could allow…”

States have general governments and can regulate in this area if they wish. If you don’t like a state’s regulatory regime, you still have the option of relocating to another. You also don’t have to do business with such a company and if you have a valid tort it’s all fair game for the courts.

By the way, I’m not in any damn tea party (but thanks for the idiotic assumption).

nmeagent 10/01/2010 1:55pm
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in reply to TheDutchess Sep 30, 2010 5:38am

I don’t think you read my comment very well. If your house is on fire, most people are actually standing around doing nothing. The first responders, who VOLUNTEER to put their lives on the lives to do things like put out fires, actually do the work. Charities are also VOLUNTARY. Taxation for a new round of unemployment benefits is COMPULSORY. If I refuse to pay the portion of taxes that goes towards this end, I will have some of my income forcibly confiscated. If I resist this in any effective manner, I will be thrown in jail. If I try to resist this or escape, I will be shot dead on the street. Compulsory taxation comes with an implicit threat of FORCE. If your house is on fire, would you force at gunpoint any people gawking at the flames from the street to put out the fire with their hands? I know I just constructed an enormous straw man, but geez, lady, give me a break.

JMac 09/30/2010 11:04pm
in reply to Jeff58 Sep 30, 2010 9:53pm

This is a typical Tea Party sound bite. Just a general statement without any examples is worthless. Which regulations would you like to get rid of? Maybe we could allow Union Carbide to run their chemical plants right here in this country like they do in India and we could have our own Chernobyl. In fact maybe they could build the plant right down the road from where you live. Lets get rid of all those other nasty regulations while we are at it. The big corporations know what is best for us. They’ll take care of us.

Jeff58 09/30/2010 9:53pm
in reply to bcarney Sep 29, 2010 3:46pm

Honestly spoken. Thanks

jomholt 09/30/2010 2:10pm

I will never vote for a republican again. Without the extension we will be homeless by January and they want to break early, and not come back until after the election? My 99 weeks ran out in June. My husband only has until 11-30-10 without the extension. There are no jobs!!!!!!And they want to extend the tax credit to the rich??? What are the republicans smoking?

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