The unemployment benefits extension bill passed through the Senate on Wednesday night after weeks of legislative debate.
The bill passed with a vote of 59-39 and will restore unemployment insurance benefits to 2.5 million people who lost their benefits during a fight over whether to add the $34 billion cost to the federal deficit. It also extends the filing deadline for extended unemployment insurance benefits until Nov. 30, 2010.
“Tonight, the United States Senate finally overcame weeks of parliamentary roadblocks by a partisan minority,” President Barack Obama said in a statement on Wednesday, “and voted to restore desperately needed unemployment insurance assistance to two and a half million Americans who lost their jobs in the recession.”
“Americans who are working day and night to get back on their feet and support their families in these tough economic times deserve more than obstruction and partisan game-playing that happens too often here in Washington,” Obama said. “I thank the members of the Senate who stood on the side of these working families today, and urge members of the House to pass this extension so I can quickly sign it into law.”