Sen. Durbin: Unemployment benefits crucial

July 18, 2010 3:36:42 PM PDT
The U.S. Senate will try again in the coming week to pass an extension of unemployment benefits, which Illinois Sen. Dick Durbin says are essential. Durbin says nearly 700,000 people are unemployed in Illinois. Of that number, he says more than 100,000 lost their benefits when the Senate failed to pass an extension.

Durbin says the money is crucial for the unemployed, and he is touting it as an effective form of economic stimulus.

"Money spent on unemployment benefits goes directly into the economy," Senator Durbin said. "As this money goes back into the economy, it's spent and respent. It generates economic activity that starts to help America come out of this recession."

"The budget is over a trillion dollars, too, and somewhere in the course of spending a trillion dollars, we ought to be able to find enough to pay for a program for the unemployed. We're all for extending unemployment insurance, the question is when are we going to get serious about the debt," said Republican Sen. Mitch McConmnell, Senate minority leader.


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