Unemployment Benefits Extended By Senate Vote Today!

By: Tina Volpe - January 7, 2014

With the long-term unemployment extension that was cut off at the end of Dec 2013, approximately 1.3 million people were left high and dry, waiting to find out if it would be extended when Congress returned from their holiday break.

It has been extended in the Senate vote, and after passing the House, those who have been unemployed for more than six months will be getting the extended benefits.

In a Senate vote of 60 to 37, the extension of benefits was granted for another three months. However, it still has to pass the House vote.

Of the 60 yes votes to extend, the four Republicans who voted yes made it decidedly clear that they wanted the cost of this extension offset by other budget cuts, somewhere.

“It was in the balance till the very last minute,” said Senator Jack Reed, Democrat of Rhode Island, an author of the measure with Senator Dean Heller, Republican of Nevada.

And President Obama kept the pressure on the Senate, as well as the House, to pass this bill as he spoke from the East Room in the White House.

“We’ve got to get this across the finish line without obstruction or delay,” he said, even as he praised the surprise outcome.

But, there always has to be a fly in the ointment – and that fly in this ointment was John A. Boehner of Ohio, who made it abundantly clear that those extension benefits would have to be paid for one way or another, and the repayment must be tied to Republican priorities. Some of those priorities he was speaking about included the Keystone XL oil pipeline, expanding exemptions from the Affordable Care Act and opening energy exploration on federal land.

“One month ago I personally told the White House that another extension of temporary emergency unemployment benefits should not only be paid for but include something to help put people back to work,” Mr. Boehner said after the Senate vote. “To date, the president has offered no such plan. If he does, I’ll be happy to discuss it, but right now the House is going to remain focused on growing the economy and giving America’s unemployed the independence that only comes from finding a good job.”

Either way, let politics be politics, the American’s who feared losing those benefits forever have just received some great – and much needed – news.

Image via NDN

About the Author

Tina VolpeTina Volpe is an author, freelance writer and a college student. She loves spending time with her rescued feathered and furry friends... cooking Italian food, reading, writing, hiking and dreams of a huge animal sanctuary. Follow her on Twitter, Facebook, Linkedin and Google+

View all posts by Tina Volpe
  • Tyler Ellis

    This story is not 100% true. While the Senate did pass a TEST vote, basically a vote to open the topic for real debate in congress, of 60-37 it will still have to achave to pass the house in which the aforementioned fly in the ointment is the current speaker of, and is much more GOP controlled. This story is really getting up false hopes. Retract it!

    • http://yahoo.com rob

      It is still in the Senate I watched today jan 9th.

  • Adam

    I thought it still has to go through the house of reps??

  • bc

    All of your are out in the next election cycle.

  • http://www.tinavolpe-writer.com/ Tina Volpe

    It does still have to go through the House – but Boehner has already agreed! It should pass no problem.

  • lonie

    This money is taken from each and every person that draws a paycheck It is our money, so what the hell is the problem with giving back to the people that need it and deserve it.

    • Kim

      Yes, this is correct! So why are they trying to find the money? Didn’t we already have it taken out of our paychecks? Where is our money?? Maybe they needed it to pay for Obama Care lol.. This is a complete joke?? I have paid into the system for over 30 years without asking for help. Now I am unemployed for the first time in my life and cannot find the help I need. Maybe if I came from Mexico and never paid anything into the system I could get a check, medical insurance, and my teeth cleaned all compliments of tax paying law abiding citizens. What the hell is the matter with our government???

    • Richard

      I’ve been paying in to social security and edd since 1968 and have never needed to use it until the last six months. I didn’t realize how hard it would be to tackle new work at my age. So I do appreciate the help since times are really rough for me right now. In the past I’ve always helped everyone else when I could, hoping that someday someone would return the favor to me. I do believe ,however, that money should be set aside to create more jobs that don’t just include the health industry which has the majority at this point.

    • Judy

      I agree, I have paid in to unemployment for 45 years and now that I need it I should be able to get it. It is our money in the first place.

  • colleen nichols

    when will the final vote take place

  • http://yahoo.com rob

    They didn’t pass unemployment today I watched them on the senate channel they were still argueing at 4pm today listen and watch!

    • Skittrell

      Yeah The not so great politican , but warrior for Obama and the Progrssive moment .. Mr. H Reid again tried to pull a fast one ..Instead of 3 months lets go 10 and get through the election and not allow any amendments from the GOP… I am so tired of our Government spending our tax money on themselves and making sure they have a job instead of what is good for the America peopel By seeing some of your comments you are for the O’s Nice that we are now paying millions for Mrs. O to vacation on her own. I did not know we (the taxpayer ) has to pay for the first lady to party. The O’s before this last vacation had 17 vacations in 3 1/2 years either together or apart. They have spent over 47 million on just their vacations and that does not account for anything else…Boy oh Boy they are sure for the middle class…The middle class pays for the poor, the rich, the unemployed and the illegals…This is what O has done for America.

  • YONATAN C

    Why are me made to feel like we’re asking for something that we don’t deserve, when we paid into the system all of our working years? YOU’RE NOT GIVING US A HAND OUT OR CHARITY. This is why taxes had been taken out of our paychecks every week. This money doesn’t belong to you, to do with it as you will. Such as using our money to bailout the corrupt banking industry. I don’t recall much senate debate when approving the bailouts. This I will remind you again, is what was the direct reason for the poor economy both here and around the entire world. This was done by greedy bankers, and was paid for by the working men and women of this country. By the way, what did we get in return from the banks? We’re paying even more banking fees and they’re making huge profits because of it. Crime really seemed to work out for them. They actually gave themselves huge bonuses after the bailout. Our tax payer dollars also bailed out the Airline industry too. How were we thanked in return? Poor service, and added fees for everything but using the toilet. Now Americans are unemployed and need to pay their bills and provide for the families, and we’re being told that the senate can’t pass the extension bill “because it’s too late to vote for it now” according to John Boehner. This is one of the Republicans that have rejected and tried killing the bill since last December. Now he’s claiming that too much time has gone by, and it can’t be approved. How did we ever have the misfortune to have such uncompassionate, self-centered, self-indulged, self-promoting, career politicians, claiming to represent our best interests? Two million unemployed families are still having to struggle day to day, not knowing if they will even have a roof over their head, and these clowns continue to play “party politics’

    • shawn

      What is going on? Are we going to be reimbursed? After 6 month’s I finally got a job. But no thank’s to our WORTHLESS FUCKING GOVERNMENT!!!!!!! My family suffered so horribly because of these FUCK FACED OLD RICH BASTARD’S!!!!!!!!

  • Julie Staner

    It is very high level of unemployment today but at the same time there are many vacancies. But why there are still so many unemployed people? I found the answer.
    Unfortunately, the wages are very low today and people prefer to be unemployed
    than get low wages. I don’t agree with them. It seems to me that it is better to work and sometimes when you need cash to take 24/7 online advance money loan. Such companies give an opportunity to support your finances if you have low wage.