Just over a week ago, the Senate fell one vote short of overcoming a Republican filibuster to pass a three-month extension of assistance for the long-term unemployed.
Republicans and Democrats, many from the nation’s most economically depressed states, had been trying to reach a solution that would allow people who have exhausted their unemployment insurance to continue receiving benefits as long as the government offset the $6 billion cost.
The [FY2014 Omnibus Appropriations] bill provides $85.2 billion for Overseas Contingency Operations (OCO), $5.7 billion higher than the [President’s] request. Most of this change comes from the $8.5 billion transferred from the base [Pentagon] budget offset by a $3 billion cut to the request for the Afghanistan Security Forces Fund.
[Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid] said Democrats would keep pushing to extend the benefits, which expired at the end of last year, cutting off more than 1.3 million Americans. That number has since grown to more than 1.7 million.