Senate Dems Bust GOP Jobs Bill Filibuster

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Senate Democrats have cleared the Republican filibuster against extending jobless benefits, clearing the way for an up or down vote on the bill.

If passed, unemployment benefits will be extended to millions of Americans like Marilyn Green who are out of work.

Green is a Missouri lawyer who lost her job, and now she's afraid of losing her unemployment benefits -- the $320 she has received every week for more than a year. 

"I'm an attorney who can't even get a job in a retail store," she said.

Under the proposed measure, people who lost benefits during the past few months would continue to receive them retroactively.

A report revealed Tuesday that unemployment rates in 39 states declined in June.  But Gretchen Hamel, executive director of the bi-partisan, non-profit group Public Notice, says the new numbers can be misleading.

Click play for her explaination, following an updated CBNNews.com report.

However, the measure offers no help for those who have received the maximum 99 weeks of unemployment benefits.

Republican lawmakers have been blocking the bill for weeks, trying to stop what they view as the government's out-of-control spending.
    
Their main concern is that Democrats refuse to make budget cuts to pay for the $34 billion bill, adding even more to the already jaw-dropping national debt.
    
Consequently, Republicans offered their own proposal to extend the benefits that included cutting other Washington expenditures and using stimulus money. Democratic lawmakers, however, rejected that idea.

With late Sen. Robert Byrd's West Virginia seat having been filled, Democrats garned enough votes to pass the bill.

The White House called the bill "emergency spending" and urged lawmakers to put politics aside and pass the bill for the sake of those who are out of work.

"We've got a responsibility to help them make ends meet and support their families even as they're looking for another job," President Obama said.

However, Republicans like Sen. John Cornyn of Texas countered that Americans want checks and balances in government.
    
Cornyn referred to what's happening in Washington as a single-party government that's scaring the living daylights out of Americans.

"I think a lot of people are looking back with more fondness on President Bush's administration, and I think history will treat him well," he said.

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Mark Martin is a reporter and anchor at CBN News, covering various issues from military matters to alternative fuels. Mark has reported internationally in the Middle East and traveled to Bahrain to cover stories on the U.S.S. Dwight D. Eisenhower. Follow Mark on Twitter @MarkMartinCBN and "like" him at Facebook.com/MarkMartinCBN.