A bipartisan group of U.S. senators has reached a deal to extend federal benefits to the chronically unemployed for an additional five months.
One negotiator referred to the conclusion as a “bipartisan breakthrough.”
Five Republicans have signed on to the $10 billion measure, effectively meaning it should clear the Democratic-led chamber. A vote is not expected until after next week’s recess and prospects for passage in the House are uncertain.
The recession-era program that extended jobless benefits for millions of Americans expired at the end of last year. Efforts to renew it since, even for a short period of time, have fallen short due wrangling over new spending.
Republicans have argued that extending the benefits are a disincentive for people to find jobs. They have pushed for tying reforms to the unemployment insurance program to any extension.
Proponents of the bill plan for Congress to tweak the federal pension law to save money and increase revenues.
The plan would also end unemployment insurance for anyone whose adjusted gross income in the previous year was $1 million or more.
Should jobless benefits be extended?
Or should Congress be focusing on a more long-term solution?
Sound off below!