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Obama: Hole U.S. ‘digging out of’ requires billions more in unemployment benefits

Dave Boyer

Obamacare has caused many Americans to lose their jobs. Credit: borman818 via Flickr

Although the jobless rate in November fell to its lowest level since he took office, President Obama called on Republican lawmakers Saturday to spend tens of billions on unemployment benefits that are set to expire this month.

“It shouldn’t be a partisan issue,” Mr. Obama said in his weekly address. But he said the “economic lifeline” is in jeopardy.

“All because Republicans in this Congress – which is on track to be the most unproductive in history – have so far refused to extend it” Mr. Obama said.

If Congress doesn’t act before lawmakers leave on their holiday break, about 1.3 million unemployed Americans will see their benefits run out. The nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office has estimated it would cost taxpayers about $26 billion to extend the benefits through next year.

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