unemployment extension benefits bill has been thwarted by Congress. The unemployment extension could be passed by Obama, if a petition from the 99ers goes through. The 99ers are a grassroot group of long term unemployed that have not only been searching high and low for jobs, but also lobbying to protect their interests.
The temporary unemployment extension expired on June 2nd. Since then - actually since before then, the House and the Senate were working to pass HR 4213, the American Jobs and Closing Tax Loopholes act. The House passed the measure before Memorial day, and the Senate recently voted down the bill.
Politics as usual is getting in the way of benefits needed. The democrats and republicans can't figure out how to pay for the measure. The democrats want to push down a bunch of tax increases to small businesses, oil companies, and investment fund managers. The republicans want to use unused stimulus funds.
In addition there are back and forth arguments about other provisions of the unemployment extension, such as one senator's desire to have mandatory drug testing for all those on unemployment benefits.
President Obama has expressed that he wants the unemployment benefits passed because of the millions of Americans that are in need of benefits. HR 4213 is dead right now, and so the 99ers have started a petition that could be delivered to Obama.
The petition calls for an executive order that will extend unemployment benefits to the long term unemployed. Let's just hope the measure is passed.