Congress approves extension of emergency jobless benefits

The House has approved a six-month extension of emergency jobless benefits for the long-term unemployed, sending the measure to the White House for President Obama's signature, according to The Washington Post.

The bill will revive benefits for the nearly 3 million people whose checks were cut off when the program expired June 2 and ensure up to 99 weeks of benefits for those who have exhausted their state benefits; states are responsible for the first 26 weeks of benefits.

Republicans and Democrats have been stuck in a debate regarding extending the benefits; Republicans were concerned about the U.S.' debt and wanted to cover the cost of the extension using unspent funds from last year's economic stimulus package.

There are 14.6 million unemployed people in the U.S., and more than 9.2 million are collecting some form of unemployment insurance. More than half—4.9 million—are receiving the federal extensions.

Date : 7/26/2010