Unemployment Benefit Extension News Review and Update March 18, 2014:
Right now, the unemployment benefit extension plan is on the table, but lawmakers are not seated. Once again, the Senate is on recess for a week and will not return until March 24, 2014. Upon their return, reviewing the unemployment benefit extension plan proposal is expected to be a top priority. Before the Senate went out on recess, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid said that he intends to take up the measure as soon as possible.
Many Americans waiting for Congress to pass an extension plan have been waiting since their benefits expired on December 28, 2013. It has been a long wait for these Americans, but just because the vote is expected to happen does not mean it is given that it will pass. A vote to pass an unemployment extension plan has failed several times already this year. In the Senate, 60 votes of approval will be necessary in order for the extension plan to pass. After this, the long term unemployment extension legislation would move on to the GOP-controlled House. The House would also have to take a vote on the measure before it could become law. The Senate vote is expected to be the easier of the two since the Senate has a Democratic majority and the current legislation was also sponsored by 5 Republicans. The House vote will have fewer Democrats to provide support and therefore, more Republicans will need to provide a vote of support for the bill to become law.