Health Care

House Dems call for extension of expiring unemployment benefits

House Dems call for extension of expiring unemployment benefits”

Almost half of Americans whose families experienced a layoff during the coronavirus pandemic now believe those jobs are lost forever, a new poll shows, as temporary cutbacks give way to shuttered businesses, bankruptcies and lasting payroll cuts. "We have an agreement in principle on the shape of the package". "Time is of the essence and lives are being lost", the pair added.

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) was expected to unveil the details of the proposal but adjourned without doing so, virtually ensuring a gap in benefits.

House Democrats are pushing for a $3 trillion-plus package they passed in May that extends a $600-per-week boost in unemployment benefits through January, among other items. "And he wants to be, not only expeditious in that deployment of funds but also make sure that people do not use this funding mechanism as a way to just fund some pet project that may not be a priority for the vast majority of the American people".

Whether to extend unemployment benefits - and by how much - is a main sticking point among Republicans. House minority leader Kevin McCarthy said on Tuesday that the bill will pass in August at the earliest.

CARES II will also include $100 billion for colleges and schools and Paycheck Protection Program loans, according to Forbes.

So many things! The approximately $1 trillion package includes $16 billion in funding for COVID-19 testing, tax credits that encourage companies to hire workers, and $105 billion to help schools reopen (which is now wrapped in controversial requirements that schools open their doors to receive some funding). And with the unemployment rate still in double digits and the virus spreading at its highest levels yet, Democrats say increased unemployment benefits should be extended. In some situations, the boost gives the unemployed more money than if they were working.

"That's right, America", Schumer said Thursday.

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"I'm not going to mince words: a Republican failure to continue the $600 a week federal unemployment supplement would represent a racially discriminatory action".

The unemployment debate is only one of many issues dividing Republicans as they enter negotiations with Democrats over how best to respond to the prolonged coronavirus crisis and devastating economic fallout.

Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin on Thursday told reporters that the bill will provide roughly 70 percent of wage replacement until the end of 2020.

In laying out the bill Thursday, McConnell did not mention food assistance, hazard pay for essential workers, rental assistance or an extension of the moratorium on evictions.

McConnell, who spent time over the weekend in his home state of the Kentucky, said Friday he hoped a package could be agreed on "in the next few weeks".

House Democrats took to Twitter to decry their Senate GOP colleagues for abdicating their responsibility to the American people, noting that Republicans found time to vote for a mammoth $740 billion Pentagon budget but failed to approve anything to meet the needs of struggling workers and families.

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