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Unemployment Extension Fails In The House Of Representatives

Unemployment Extension Fails In The House Of Representatives - The House of Representatives on Thursday voted down a measure that would have reauthorized extended unemployment insurance for another three months, leaving no clear path forward to prevent the benefits from lapsing as scheduled on Nov. 30.

Without a reauthorization, the Labor Department estimates that two million long-term unemployed will prematurely stop receiving benefits before the end of the year.

"I think it's a sad moment," said Rep. Alan Grayson (D-Fla.) after the vote. "It appalls me that the Republicans keep pitching and pitching and pitching the tax cuts for the rich and won't join in a bill to help people keep their homes and not have to live in their cars."

The bill was brought to the floor under a "suspension of the rules," meaning it required approval from two-thirds of the House. It failed 258 to 154, with mostly Democratic support. Twenty-one Republicans voted in favor and 11 Democrats voted nay.

Even if it had passed the House, it's unclear how it would get through the Senate, where Democrats will need at least three Republicans to switch sides. No GOP moderates have signaled a willingness to support an unemployment reauthorization that isn't "paid for" with spending cuts -- something Democrats have refused to do all year. In most recessions, the cost of federally-funded jobless aid is usually paid for with deficit spending.

It's likely there will be another effort in Congress to reauthorize the benefits before the Christmas break, though lawmakers will be off next week for Thanksgiving.

Unemployment Extension Fails In The House Of Representatives

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