Senate votes to advance jobless benefits

On April 12, the Senate voted 60 to 34 to proceed on a jobs bill that would extend unemployment insurance, subsidies for the Consolidated Omnibus Budget Reconciliation Act health insurance program and federal flood insurance through May 5, according to The Washington Post. Jobless benefits for many unemployed individuals expired a week ago.

Four Republican senators joined Democrats to move the bill forward; the measure likely will pass in a final tally this week. If approved, it will go to President Obama.

In late March, Republicans stalled Democrats' efforts to move the bill quickly, and the extensions were not approved before the Senate's two-week Easter recess. Republicans have objected to the bill because they say its cost was not offset and will add to the budget deficit.

Democrats believe the extensions must pass and don't need to be offset because unemployment extensions always have been considered emergency spending.

Date : 4/14/2010