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Dems Introduce Stand-Alone Unemployment Insurance Bill

June 28, 2010 - by Hilary Worden

The American Jobs and Closing Tax Loopholes Act (H.R.4213), which would have extended unemployment insurance benefits, closed some tax loopholes and more, was officially abandoned last week after the Democrats failed to overcome a Republican filibuster for the third time. As a result, over a million uninsured people have had their unemployment insurance benefits cut off since they expired on June 2. But while the Democrats may have lost hope of ever passing H.R. 4213, they have recently introduced a new bill for the sole purpose of extending unemployment benefits.

The new bill, the Unemployment Insurance Extension Act of 2010, is just three-pages long and does just one thing — extend the filing deadline for extended unemployment benefits to the end of the year. It was introduced by Sen. Debbie Ann Stabenow [D-MI] (pictured), and has four Democratic co-sponsors. Sen. Olympia Snowe [R-ME] has also said she would support such a bill, suggesting that the it could have at least some bi-partisan support, though not necessarily enough to pass. With the passing of Sen. Robert Byrd [D, WV] and with Sen. Ben Nelson [D, NE] saying last week he would vote against any UI bill that isn’t fully offset with new revenues, the Democrats would need at least 2 more Republicans besides Snowe to cross the aisle and vote with them if they are to have the 60 votes they will need to overcome an inevitable Republican filibuster. Additionally, Democrats may be concerned the bill could give Republicans the chance to kill Senate time that the Democrats would like to spend on other issues.

At this moment, it’s uncertain whether this new bill will be voted on this week. The Democrats could call it up for unanimous consent passage at any point, but that would be blocked by Republicans. If they try to move it under regular order, Republicans could easily use Senate rules to drag the debate out for sevarel days, or even weeks, and Congress is scheduled to leave for a week-long recess on Friday. Keep checking this blog, Facebook and Twitter for updates.


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Displaying 61-90 of 107 total comments.

  • janderson116 06/28/2010 11:06am

    As a lifelong republican with a job, I implore the Rebulican Senators to vote for this bill. I know at least twenty unemployed people that have had their benefits expire. These folks are among the hardest working most honest people I have ever known and they deserve better from the same government that has failed (and this failure rests on both parties) to create the jobs that both parties promised during the last election.
    By the time November rolls around their will be MILLIONS of people shafted by my party, PLEASE DON’T MAKE THE MISTAKE THINKING THAT YOU CAN BEAT THE DEMS WITHOUT THESE PEOPLE’S VOTES. As a veteran I was taught that we don’t leave anyone on the battlefield, and trust me these people are fighting for their lives.

  • Comm_reply
    Kat1968 06/28/2010 2:05pm

    As one of the millions of people unemployed and desperately looking for work or an extension, I thank you!! You are one of the few employed that don’t feel most of us are lazy drunks or drug addicts. I have been unemployed since Dec. 08. I was finally offered my first job on Thursday by a temporary agency just to receive a call the next day saying they cancelled it. Hopefully more people including the Senators will realize we want to work. So extend the benefits or help us bring back our jobs. $156 a week was not much but it did help to keep the lights on, food on the table, some gas in the car.

  • mamart 06/28/2010 11:09am

    Psalm 34:17-20
    When the righteous cry for help, the Lord hears and delivers them out of all their troubles. The Lord is near to the brokenhearted and saves the crushed in spirit. Many are the afflictions of the righteous, but the Lord delivers him out of them all. He keeps all his bones; not one of them is broken.

    Please have faith friends God will get us through all of these troubles.

  • flmad 06/28/2010 11:09am

    If this new bill is not passed I have no idea where my family is going to go, nor what we will do. I have NEVER been in a situation like this – I don’t know what to do – I have applied for jobs paying as little as 8.00 an hour after losing my job earning almost $50,000 annually – NOBODY wants to hire a 53 year old – I have a child with a severe mental disability and if we lose unemployment before I can somehow secure a job doing ANYTHING (yes I will take a job doing anything) he is going to do the unthinkable – due to the fact we will be losing our home, our pets, our EVERYTHING. For god’s sakes HELP US GET THROUGH THIS. I just don’t understand how this can be going on when so many people are trying so hard to become employed. It’s a losing battle. I PRAY THAT THE NEW BILL GOES THROUGH!

  • klexington 06/28/2010 11:22am

    This needs to be passed. With every new jobs report that comes out it is easy to see that there still isn’t a job recovery—and with so many people still unemployed without extended benefits there will be catastrophic consequences.

  • lordgotmilk 06/28/2010 11:29am

    As a conservative Republican that had to take some time this weekend to think through how I felt about the end of the previous bill, I say I understand that the Republicans held it up because of all the pork that was incorporated into the bill and therefore the cost. I heard, time and again, that if unemployment were a stand alone bill that many of them would support it. It’s time for you to put your money where your mouth was and get this passed quickly. Your own constituency is watching.

    As note to the Democratic Senators out there, your pressure will be needed to get through to Senator Reid that his own position on the stand alone bill will be watched carefully, since he said before that he will not allow it. If he continues with this thinking, it will assure that he nor any of his supporters will have any stand in the upcoming elections.

  • Comm_reply
    sldhouston 06/28/2010 11:49am

    @ Lordgotmilk… I can see what you’re saying about the pork being stuffed into bill 4213 but… that bill was paid for w/the exception of unemployment. Pork was paid… so it’s all the same… still. I too voted Republican last November but rest assured, I turned my vote. A democrat will have my future votes…

  • twokidstosupport 06/28/2010 11:37am

    Welcome to the land of the free. Yeah right. Only the rich are free and everyone else is screwed. Oh well, it’s been a fun ride, but it is time for all the unemployed to take action. We can call all the senators and complain, but do you think they really care? They’re getting their fat checks and long vacation next week. Time for 1776 all over again, might as well be on 4th of July. Burn baby burn!!!!

  • nhmtnbkr 06/28/2010 11:41am

    God bless Ms. Stabenow, I hope Congress gets their head out of its collective butt and passes this bill, with coverage for those like me whose claim has expired. I’m trying desperately to full-time work and now any job to cover the loss of my unemployment until I find a job in my field. I am supremely pissed off that Congress couldn’t have done this a month ago and save me the financial ruin that might soon befall me because of this.

  • AnxiouslyWaiting 06/28/2010 12:15pm

    And we’re living here in Allentown . . .

  • moriah15 06/28/2010 12:20pm

    Thank You Debbie! As another unemployed professional, despirately looking for employment so I do not loose my home.An extension is the only thing keeping the roof over my family’s head. No extension no home, food, car or any chance of finding a job. I really don’t care how they do but they need to pass something to keep all of us in this position going, to not loose hope of finding a job.
    What has happened to those that supposedly represent the people? Only the employed get to be represented? I do believe we still can vote and we will remember who tried to continue this horror on the American people.

  • jenny2010 06/28/2010 12:21pm

    I’m praying that this bill will pass soon!!! All of us who are unemployed are only asking to have our benefits extended to make ends meet while we look for jobs to get out of this hell we are in. My mortgage is past due and there have been no new job openings this week. I hate that my kids are not in school because they have to hear me frantically search for work. Every time the phone rings they cross their little fingers and hope its a job. It breaks my heart when its only a bill collector.

  • vzmoore 06/28/2010 12:45pm

    The banks got trillions (of our money and our kids and grandkids money) with little hesitation.

    AMERICANS I have a question for you. How much longer will this blatant hypocrisy be sufferable?

    Below is text from the preamble of United States Declaration of Independence (Divided into 2 post):

    “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights,71 that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.

    That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed,…

  • Comm_reply
    vzmoore 06/28/2010 12:45pm

    …That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness. Prudence, indeed, will dictate that Governments long established should not be changed for light and transient causes; and accordingly all experience hath shewn, that mankind are more disposed to suffer, while evils are sufferable, than to right themselves by abolishing the forms to which they are accustomed. But when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same Object evinces a design to reduce them under absolute Despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such Government, and to provide new Guards for their future security."

  • Revolution 06/28/2010 1:25pm

    I am a Veteran from Boston who is unemployed and have always looked forward to 4th of July for what it stands for in our history. The Republicans should be embarrassed in having the words United Stated in front of their titles. They are a disgrace and this 4th of July America is abandonign their own. The Senators need to remember the faces that go along with the names of the people who are hanging on to every minute and word until this is passed or help is finalized. This is pure torture to families in this country. It is a sad state of affairs.
    You need to take IMMEDIATE action and enough about saving the defecit etc. There is no doubt this can be done today! Stop playing games and get it done. This is an emeregency and the world and your citizens are watching.
    Do the right thing….NOW!!

  • Chris51 06/28/2010 2:17pm

    How hostile are some members of Congress, not only about bill HR4213, but about unemployed Americans in general?
    “You know, we should not be giving cash to people who basically are just going to BLOW IT ON DRUGS and not take care of their own children.” — Sen. Orrin Hatch (R-Utah).
    "Is the government now creating HOBOS?”, Rep. Dan Heller (R-Nevada)
    "We shouldn’t TURN THE SAFETY NET INTO A HAMMOCK, Rep. Steve King (R-Iowa)
    “[W]e have put in so much entitlement into our government that we really have SPOILED OUR CITIZENRY and said, you don’t want the jobs that are available.”, Sharron Angle, Republican Senate candidate in Nevada and Sen. Harry Reid’s opponent
    "©ontinuing to pay people unemployment compensation is a DISINCENTIVE FOR THEM TO SEEK NEW WORK” ,Sen. Jon Kyl (R-Arizona)
    If you are one of the 1.2 million Americans who have not been able to find jobs and who are at risk of losing their benefits go to WWW.CHANGE.ORG

  • DKay 06/28/2010 2:35pm

    Please do your part – we all have a part in this. I am sending the following letter to all 99 Senators. You can use it or write your own, but do something. Politicians respond to huge public outcry. Call and email. You have to be heard, and it feels better to do something than do nothing.

    June 28, 2010

    Dear Senator:

    The Senate needs to pass a stand-alone unemployment extension bill NOW.

    Short, sweet, simple, and immediate.

    Anything less is unacceptable.


  • Comm_reply
    Kerlynne 06/28/2010 2:59pm

    YES, even in the senators sites have recognzied that many people are contacting them about this. WE DO HAVE POWER BUT WE NEED TO USE IT!! Write, call,contact them in anyway possible you can and let them know!! We can not remain silent on this.

  • Kerlynne 06/28/2010 2:54pm

    I called today to Senator Harry Reid’s office after sending letters to every Republican Senator I could find. I of course got one of his people and asked if it is true that he is the one that makes the decisions on what goes on the senate floor. She confrimed that was true. I then asked “what the blue blazes is going on then? Why isn’t he letting this new bill for a stand alone unemployment bill go through that ( i believe ) it was Senator Snowe from Maine has placed in for consideration?” She answered,( very snotty like I will say)
    " No one will pass that bill or support it" ?? WHY? I swear they are using the american people like pin cushions! I know I want to work, I am not sitting around waiting. It is only me and my pets. I have 1/4 of the things I had 2 years ago and the idea of loosing the rest is frightening to me. PASS THE DAMN BILL!!! Deal with the other things if need be but let us thrive enough to continue to hope!!!

  • Kerlynne 06/28/2010 3:11pm

    OH and just one more thing… DO NOT IN ANYWAY CONSIDER LOWERING THE AMOUNTS GIVEN. That 25 bucks allows food on the table because the state says I make to much on my unemployment. How stupid is that??? I am so sick and tired of living on the edge of nothing and despair.

  • Revolution 06/28/2010 3:13pm

    “Revolution was effected before the war commenced. The Revolution was in the minds and hearts of the people . . . . This radical change in the principles, opinions, sentiments, and affections of the people was the real American Revolution.”
    John Adams, 1818

    “Objects of the most stupendous magnitude, and measure in which the lives and liberties of millions yet unborn are intimately interested, are now before us. We are in the very midst of a revolution the most complete, unexpected and remarkable of any in the history of nations.”
    John Adams, letter to William Cushing, June 9, 1776

  • Revolution 06/28/2010 3:19pm

    As good government is an empire of laws, how shall your laws be made? In a large society, inhabiting an extensive country, it is impossible that the whole should assemble to make laws. The first necessary step, then, is to depute power from the many to a few of the most wise and good.
    John Adams, Thoughts on Government, 1776

    Obviously we dont have the few wise and good in power in the senate…but we have the power to change that…

  • Revolution 06/28/2010 3:29pm

    “Our own Country’s Honor, all call upon us for a vigorous and manly exertion, and if we now shamefully fail, we shall become infamous to the whole world. Let us therefore rely upon the goodness of the Cause, and the aid of the supreme Being, in whose hands Victory is, to animate and encourage us to great and noble Actions — The Eyes of all our Countrymen are now upon us, and we shall have their blessings, and praises, if happily we are the instruments of saving them from the Tyranny mediated against them. Let us therefore animate and encourage each other, and show the whole world, that a free man contending for Liberty on his own ground is superior to any slavish mercenary on earth.”
    George Washington, 1776

  • megarock 06/28/2010 3:32pm


    Doesn’t matter if they are Republican, Democratic, Tea Party or anything else. If you are in office now it’s time for you to become one of the unemployed. Join us and see what it’s like out here. We handed out 167 billion in foreign aid but we can’t muster a billion or two for our own people?

    I didn’t vote for this kind of government and the only way to stop this once and for all is to clean house once and for all. Every person in this country should set one solid rule – if a person runs under ANY political party DO NOT VOTE FOR THEM. Dems, GOP – all of them need to go because they DO NOT CARE ABOUT THE PEOPLE.

    And didn’t these wankers just take a week long holiday just three weeks ago? I know I don’t get to take that much time off work but it’s Washington and taxpayer money they’re wasting – which is ok so long as it’s wasted on their wallets.

    ALL INCUMBENTS MUST GO. Spread the word.

  • Comm_reply
    skrapper 06/28/2010 4:25pm

    It doesn’t matter what political organisation they belong to “ALL INCUMBENTS WILL BE OUT!” Also don’t be fooled by this Tea Party, They would like to end our Social Security. So we will be broke now, and broke later in life.
    We need people that have walked in our shoes, and have worked for a living, not robbed us blind!
    We paid into Unemployment for years,,, were is all the money? Who did they give it to, that we can’t even be taken care of.
    There crooks with there hands in other peoples pockets.

  • illucy 06/28/2010 4:05pm

    If you’re average joe, look out because you’re just a drop in the bucket… expendable. I wonder how much a person pays into the UE fund over their lifetime.

    “It’s sad that they don’t put the same amount of resources into helping families through this “depression” as they did helping banks, wall street and rebuilding foreign countries."

    Those who have worked all their lives paying into this program now have to beg for help. The Dems see this as, “see the Republicans don’t care about you.” The Republicans see this as, “we’re the only ones that are looking out for the national debt.” No one is explaining that these unemployment benefits are nothing compared to the insane amount of money we send to foreign countries that hate us.

    I wish the Dems and Rep would just STOP this bickering and STOP politically lining themselves up for Noverber. Start caring about fellow Americans and do what you were elected to do…. CARE more about us and less about your JOB.

  • bleumonday 06/28/2010 4:50pm

    I agree Kerylnee NO more giving back. People desperately need that extra 25 and now after delays will so even more to pay past due or late fees or whatever other hikes they are getting to keep their collectors at arm’s reach. I am beyond fed up

  • Revolution 06/28/2010 4:55pm

    Where is the URGENCY!!?? Where are the Senators TONIGHT? They should not be leaving until they pass IMMEDIATE assistance!! Get this done NOW!!

  • Lexs 06/28/2010 5:20pm

    MALINGER: to pretend or exaggerate incapacity or illness (as to avoid duty or work)

    The number of unemployed persons was 15.0 million in May. The unem-
    ployment rate edged down to 9.7 percent, the same rate as in the
    first 3 months of 2010.

    In May, the number of long-term unemployed (those jobless for 27 weeks
    and over) was about unchanged at 6.8 million. These individuals made
    up 46.0 percent of unemployed persons, about the same as in April.

    The number of persons employed part time for economic reasons (some-
    times referred to as involuntary part-time workers) declined by
    343,000 in May to 8.8 million. These individuals were working part
    time because their hours had been cut back or because they were un-
    able to find a full-time job

    The Employment Situation for June is scheduled to be released on
    Friday, July 2, 2010, at 8:30 a.m. (EDT).

  • formikeb 06/28/2010 5:28pm

    The Republicans have lost so much because of this mess, they would rather pay the banks another bail out in 6 months.I was a Republican until this. Completely irresponsible.You must follow thru for aplan to work,just like a good golf swing.Good luck in the next election, your going to need it.

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