Savings Dwindling, Millions of Unemployed Play the Waiting Game

Friday, July 02, 2010 at 6:00 am

Without Sen. Robert Byrd (D-W.Va.), whose casket lay in repose in the Capitol on Thursday, Democrats were unable to pass an extension of unemployment benefits. (epa/

The unemployed now know that Congress cannot help them — at least not yet. After attempting to gain cloture and move forward to a majority-rules vote on an extension of federal unemployment benefits three times in as many weeks, the Senate finally gave up and went home. Moderate Republican Sens. Olympia Snowe and Susan Collins of Maine joined Democrats in voting for the extension on Wednesday. But without Sen. Ben Nelson (D-Neb.), who broke ranks to vote no, or Sen. Robert Byrd (D-W.Va.), who passed away earlier in the week, Democrats came up one vote short.

[Economy1] After the failed vote, Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) said Democrats would wait until after the July 4 recess to vote on the deficit-increasing $34 billion extension of benefits to Nov. 30. By the time the Senate does pass the bill — on July 12 at the very earliest — at least 2.14 million Americans will have lost their benefits. The good news? Those benefits are retroactive; the unemployed will be able to apply for the benefits they lost out on, and will eventually get checks. The bad news? Many of those 2.14 million Americans will have to make do with very little in the meantime.

Even if Congress extends the benefits, the lapse is unprecedented — and the hurt it causes is palpable. Never before has Congress let unemployment benefits expire with joblessness still so prevalent, according to an analysis from the Center of American Progress and National Employment Law project. During the most recent recession, after the collapse of the stock bubble in 2001, Congress created federal unemployment benefits to supplant state programs, and kept them until the unemployment rate was 5.8 percent. During the much more severe recession in the early 1980s, Congress let extended federal benefits expire when unemployment was 7.2 percent. Even the most optimistic forecasts do not suggest the United States will see that unemployment rate again until 2012 or 2013, at the earliest.

Moreover, even when Congress reinstates the federally extended benefits, unemployed Americans will have spent as many as 10 weeks without the checks — checks that often keep families just out of poverty and in their homes. Among the unemployed themselves, responses range from earnest hopefulness to despair.

Benefits stopped coming to LuAnn Greer, laid off from her job in the entertainment industry in Las Vegas after 17 years, two weeks ago. She is eager to point out that she is all right: She has nobody to support but herself, as her husband passed away and her children are grown up. But her unemployment checks were barely enough to live on, given her mortgage, upkeep on her home and expenses for prescriptions. She is now drawing down the last of her savings and selling her car. Even if her last tier of benefits kicks in, in a few weeks, she might move to Southern California to live with her son, leaving her two-bedroom, one-and-a-half bath to the bank.

“I’ll work as soon as I can get it,” she says, noting that she started working when she was still a teenager, and up to this point, aside from taking a few weeks off when she had her children, had never stopped. “The hard times won’t be forever, and at some point we’ll all be back on our feet.” But while the unemployment checks have stopped coming, she says, she plans to focus on cooking at home, avoiding the heat in shops’ and friends’ air-conditioning and giving up her smoking habit, with the aim of whittling her spending down to as few dollars a day as possible.

“Might be the recession that kicks the cigarettes for me,” she notes. “I guess that’s your silver lining right there.”

For many other unemployed Americans who have shared their stories over email, the outlook is less rosy. Experts agree that the picture is bleak.

“It is a tragedy that Congress has left millions of Americans to spend the … July holiday in despair because their elected leaders couldn’t pass a single bill — over the course of several months — to help people who are unemployed through no fault of their own and are falling farther and farther behind in the worst downturn since the Great Depression,” Christine Owens, the head of the National Employment Law Project, said on Thursday. “Congress has failed the unemployed again, and in the process has shown an inexcusable disdain for the real suffering of millions of families relying on the jobless safety net, and indifference to the real harm this inaction will cause the economy.”

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North Capitol Street » Blog Archive » Savings Dwindling, Millions of Unemployed Play the Waiting Game
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Comment posted July 2, 2010 @ 10:37 am

I am one of those 1.7 million Americans, who has been broke and distitute over the last couple of weeks and will be over the Independence Day weekend and the next couple of weeks. I've been working every year of my life since I was 15 years old, including, when I was college. …never been unemployed for more than a few months. It's been over a year, now. By the way, the telecommunications company I worked for 3+ years, replaced us with part-time kids, w/ no benefits. Awesome! …not to mention all the jobs our country has outsourced to countries like China: one of the worst human rights abusers in the world. This country is heading in the WRONG direction.

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Comment posted July 2, 2010 @ 11:53 am

Maybe someone should question the PRESIDENT I for one am beginning to wonder WHO put him in office and for what reason it was NOT for the UNITED STATES He is worse then all put togethere he also went on holiday for the 4th and did nothing.

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Comment posted July 2, 2010 @ 1:09 pm


Comment posted July 2, 2010 @ 1:32 pm

The Senators, especially the Republican ones, shouldn't get a paycheck starting from now through 7/12, when they reconvene to pass the bill. We're not getting our checks, as they break for vacation, so they shouldn't, either.

Comment posted July 2, 2010 @ 2:36 pm

Well while Congress sits down at their 4th of July Celebrations, eating til they are so full they will bust, raising their glasses of champagne in honor of their great country that pays their bills, watching the beautiful fireworks with their children in of course designer clothes, I will be sitting here, with nothing to eat, drinking only water from my tap, which I hope is still on, and listening to neighborhood fireworks from my neighbors. Whoope! Thank you great country for not sending what money I depended on to pay my bills, and buy food in which to keep me alive. People say we are a country of greed, yep, we sure are, we are run by a country of greedy people. Oh and Congress, don't choke on all of that bbq you will be enjoying. I hope a picture pops into your head when you are raising that fork to your mouth, of a family that is just sitting there with their children, with nothing to eat. No, I will not be celebrating the birthday of this country, why should I honor a country that has the people in charge, not giving a damn about their people.

Comment posted July 2, 2010 @ 2:38 pm

But they make sure they are the first ones to get paid

Comment posted July 2, 2010 @ 2:39 pm

wish I could afford to go somewhere really nice to spend a vacation. But that is way beyond my reach

Comment posted July 2, 2010 @ 3:12 pm

I just still can't believe that this actually happened. What I mean is that there are millions of people right now that can't eat or pay bills and they couldn't take just one more day to pass a bill that would help all these people. I think it has come down to the fact that we cannot depend on our government anymore and we have to start depending on eachother as the people. If you know someone that is going to be without on the 4th because of this recession then help them out. I will be inviting tons of neighbors without work to my house for the 4th with no job myself but I do have a garden and the local meat market gave us some hotdogs and hamburgers and that's the stuff we need to do. It's time for us to turn our backs on the people in our government that do these things and start taking care of eachother. We have the power to push them out and we should exersize that right. As far as food and this may sound old school but start a garden because you can grow tons a food from it and seeds costs 50 cents or so.

Comment posted July 2, 2010 @ 4:46 pm

What president Bush who put us in this mess and what could he have done?

Linda M.
Comment posted July 2, 2010 @ 4:48 pm

Dear Senators:
I want you to know that I believe we Americans deserve better service from an elected official. You have let me know by your “nay” vote on the Federal Unemployment Benefit Extension that you obviously don’t know the meaning of, “United we stand – Divided we fall” because you united with others like you and voted to divide this great nation and bring us to our knees when we were already down. This does not mean we will sit idly by and let this happen without voicing our opinion of your action. The estimate is approx. TWO MILLION by July, this is the number of people whom you have deprived of the help we deserve not only because we have worked for it and are in dire need, but because we are Americans and this is not the AMERICAN WAY. Respectfully,
Linda M., American and

Comment posted July 2, 2010 @ 4:53 pm

What a tragedy!!! Most of this mess is due to the fact that Republicans are standing their with their arms crossed and one Democrate ( Ben Nelson) refusing to budge! Why in God's name? Because of selfishness and spite! Remember this at Election time people! This bill better be the first on the floor come the 12th. How don't understand the heartlessnes behind this! Maybe if the hungry and homeless when banging on the door of Congress it would wake these senators up!!! Shame on You Congress!!!

Comment posted July 2, 2010 @ 6:20 pm

“No, I will not celebrate the birth of a country who's leaders do not give a damn about them”. I think that should be on the front page of every news paper. they are so eger to be there when where not wearing our seat belts or some other communisem bull shit. But when we the poeple of the united states of america are falling know onebody there.

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Comment posted July 2, 2010 @ 7:37 pm

This is insane! It is sick! Lot's of tears and utter rage.
So, today I move into my car. I have a Masters Degree in Finance, can you believe this?

Comment posted July 2, 2010 @ 11:01 pm

For those of us who do have children and cannot live without unemployment benefits, what do we do? Resume after resume and interview after interview turn up nothing. I guess our children don't count as much as those of our elected officials.

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Pingback posted July 3, 2010 @ 12:47 am

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Comment posted July 3, 2010 @ 4:28 am

I think they all should be FIRED. And that's how I'm Voting in November.NO REELECTION for any of Them. Republican or Democrat. They Work For Us. I think they forgot that.

Comment posted July 3, 2010 @ 5:37 am

I cannot believe it. Easter holiday, they made people wait, then Memorial Day Holiday, and now Independence day. All three holidays had this issue up for approval, and were held up until the old farts got back from their “Holidays” getting fat. This makes me “asshamed” of my congress. I bet they will have their meals this week. Shame on you Congress, taking so long to help your fellow Americans. To collect unemployment means a person had to work, and pay taxes to qualify. They had jobs and only get a portion of what they earned. It's not charity. Welfare is, and will be the next step for all those unemployed WORKERS. Cut all the multiple vacations out for Congress so this country can be run on a timely manner!!! And STOP bickering just because you are a twp party system. Stop the internal WARS.

Comment posted July 3, 2010 @ 5:36 pm

This is a serious issue. We, the unemployed Americans are extremely worried about it. This is a political game for the statesmen and for us it is a life and death issue. But, what can we do excepting signing petitions or creating polls. However, petitions and polls are useful ways of expressing our views. Recently, I have signed a petition on If you are also interested then go to the site and type petition: in the search box and press enter to convey your opinion.

This is my request to the Government, please do something for us.

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Comment posted July 3, 2010 @ 6:31 pm

“No, I will not celebrate the birth of a country who's leaders do not give a damn about them”. I think that should be on the front page of every news paper. they are so eger to be there when where not wearing our seat belts or some other communisem bull shit. But when we the poeple of the united states of america are falling know onebody there.

Comment posted July 3, 2010 @ 8:27 pm

I would like to know where this money is coming from that the president is putting out for Solor Power to the tune of 2 billion dollars and a few other things i saw pass the house if there is not money for the unemployed then where is this coming from ? If President Obama can not take care of the people of the UNITD STATES he needs to be IMPEACHED .. ALL of them are sorry excuses for leaders!!

Comment posted July 3, 2010 @ 9:12 pm

I don't blame Obama for the Senators sitting on their hands! Congress on both parties are to blame. Obama has a lot on his plate. I think he has been the best President as far as tackling some very hard issues. Most of the Republicans are the most insenstive, uncaring, and ruthless that I have seen. They don't want to do anything that Obama asks. So the millions of unenemployed are being used as pawns in a game. Thousands will remember this and switch parties if they have not done so by now. Thanks Congress for giving the unemployeda grand holiday by blowing us off yet again! Can't even a package of hot dogs for my kids!

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Comment posted July 4, 2010 @ 5:59 am

Please Help us the unemployed 3 years I have been in and out of temp jobs trying to get something permanent. Now unemployed again I used to earn $18 an hour I took a job for $7 an hour something is better then nothing now again nothing no unemployment no job in sight. When there is no bread in the cupboard and no means to bake it what is one to do. Great minds of our country explain that one to me.

Comment posted July 4, 2010 @ 6:46 am

I am a single women of 52 who reared 2 kids. Never unemployed in my life. Now through no fault of mine I find myself in that situation. $59 the state of SC is giving me for food stamps, that is it $59 now find a job they tell me. “What do you think I have been trying to do for the past 36 months” get real people I certainly wasn't overjoyed at my unemployment check of $320.00 after being used to $600 a week but I like everyone else prayed and put out those resumes faithfully trying to get something else anything else. I got a part – time job $7.25 an hour but I was grateful the time I worked was deducted from my unemployment fair enough. Where are the jobs people tell me I will take one anyone. When I hear people and politicians talk don’t give them anymore unemployment they won’t want to work. Live my life right now for a month see how it feels not only are our jobs gone our faces are being rubbed in it too. Explain how any intelligent person who has been used to a certain lifestyle would want to stay on unemployment no sir ladies I want my life back the one where I got up everyday and had purpose in my life and felt good about myself I want a job so shut up complaining about helping people who are out of work through no fault of their own and do your jobs. Create employment so we all get on with the job of living and helping our fellow man.

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Comment posted July 4, 2010 @ 10:11 pm

My husband and I have been living in California for about 4 months now. He has been on unemployment for about 12 months. When we moved here we thought we would have a small window of opportunity to find work and stabilize our situation.

It hasn't worked out that way. He lost his unemployment 2 weeks ago. So, we haven't been able to drive to the Career One Stop to look up jobs and when we do see them, they always tell us that there is no money for the WIA program (Workforce Investment Act). This is supposed to be a re training program, for people who have been laid off.
2nd, I am on disability and have been trying to get back in the work force. I have tried to use every opportunity that is supposedly put in place for disabled people. I am a client of Vocational Rehabilitation. They were supposed to send me money for a bus pass to get to Dr appt and look for work and to there office. The check was supposedly sent 4 weeks ago and no one can find it. The last time I talked to them she said that their offices didn't even have money for paper or pens.
It is sad that so many programs look great on paper but all the money that is supposedly being put into these programs doesn't exist.
We just spent 2 weeks with no food because unemployment never told him that he was dropped from unemployment–his status just says postponed.
And i know that this is hard for some people to really grasp, but it is difficult when you don't have gas money to look for work or to even buy toilet paper, dish soap, and medications.
It has become very hard. I have divided our bills, between 3 sons–2 who are in the Marine Corps. We have turned off the cable, gonna to a cheaper phone plan, but did keep the internet to apply for jobs, since I have difficulties getting out sometimes.
We have a small food bank here in Fallbrook, but it gives you food for only 2 days and they are only open Mon, Tues.
We pawned his school ring to get gas to go to San Diego to get assistance with the electric bill because I do use a cpap machine at night. Luckily, we were able to go to a food bank there and check on going back to school all in one trip.
We have also been to the food stamp office –we did that on Thursday –hopefully they will hurry up the process.
The sad thing is that we are not stupid people, we have our youngest son, who started college at the age of 14 and his brother graduated from college and was probably one of the Marine Corps youngest 2nd Lt's. We have done everything to raise them into responsible contributing members of society.
In the mist of this I have been putting together resources for people on disability and hope to get up an inexpensive website.
We continue to look for work, I have written to the newspaper companies here and have suggested they add a section for people on disability. No response.
I try to send our Governor, updates on how some of these programs are working and solutions. I also provide information to people on disability on how to apply for a job within SSA –they have a very simplified way for this segment of people, very very simple. And yes, i applied, but no response.
We will continue, to do what we can do to help others, and just keep moving forward. Right now it is our rent that is due$ 800.00 that we have to put together. We don't really tell our sons the whole truth, we feel that in the mist of the military's issues and training –the last thing they need is to worry about us.
So, like i said, in the mist of it all, we are ok–just keep moving forward, just sometimes we don't always have a clear direction.
I just wish that some of congress would understand that we are not content with doing nothing and sitting home on an unemployment check

Diana Guiliani


Comment posted July 5, 2010 @ 11:53 am

Thank you, We have always known that politicians are crooked but now their just being so blatant about it. It's a slap in the face. We as a whole need to vote ALL POLITICIANS out of office. I say we all get together and march into the capital bldg. and fire all of them. If 1 or 2 million people are in their face demanding a change they can't ignore us. Our voices are our greatest weapon. All the greatest changes in our countries history has come through voices united.

Comment posted July 5, 2010 @ 10:28 pm

all I can say is: Blessings to you and your family. People out there that reply to what we are writing on here, don't really comprehend what in the world we are doing. And you are doing all you can to better yourselves some way or another, and have sons in the military fighting for our freedom. It almost seems that the gov't is trying to kick you all in the face, yeah, they have your sons putting their lives on the line, but cannot even help with the simplest necessities to help you all survive. I feel for you, and my prayers and thoughts go out to you.

Comment posted July 5, 2010 @ 10:29 pm

US Gov't: How much longer do we have to wait before we can start surviving alittle again?????

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Comment posted July 6, 2010 @ 2:22 am

For those of us who do have children and cannot live without unemployment benefits, what should we do?

Comment posted July 6, 2010 @ 2:47 am

Thank you Trina,
They haven't beat us yet! I will continue to write The Governor, and send letters out, and in my spare time, look at solutions for companies to help them. I will have no home phone after tomorrow, I just need to hold on to the internet. I will be calling SSA again in the morning and asking them more questions.
But do understand, I am technically fine, just tired of eating hotdogs for the past 5 days and mac and cheese with no butter, and oatmeal. God gave me a little bit more of endurance then most people and I think that is what gets me through it all. I was able to find change for a gallon of distilled water for my CPAP machine, so at the moment it is ok,
For me, what this does is make me angry, because I have always been very resourceful and a problem solver, and it really starts to concern me, not for my self but for other people. When life becomes difficult for me, I realize that this is a bigger problem then anyone really realizes and a heavy toll for people to bear and to find away out of it all.
A simple thing as coloring the grey in my hair, even with the box color, is out of reach ( financially) at the moment and it looks terrible when I have to talk to people about jobs etc.
Toilet paper has been a commodity, I took a roll from the restaurant we stopped in to use the bathroom.
I was at a McDonalds the other day, trying to finish a paper for a school I was trying to get in. We bought a large sweet tea an split it. the thing was that it was from change on the floor board of the jeep. But what was worse is that a guy came up to us and wanted change. At that point, we still looked somewhat normal, no one can tell that we don't have cent to our name or anything to eat. All I could think of was this guy thought we were lying, and he cussed us out. So, you end up getting it from both sides of this awful fence.
So, just keep going forward.

North Capitol Street » Blog Archive » Obama Says Republicans Holding Unemployment Extension ‘Hostage’
Pingback posted July 6, 2010 @ 10:42 am

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Comment posted July 6, 2010 @ 1:48 pm

I think since Senator Byrd died, that President Obama should be able to sign a executive order or tell Senate their vacation is shortened, that there are a million people being evicted going hungry get in the office pass the bill today, not the 12th. This is BS. Oh yeah, I was lucky, I had family to help me get through the 4th, but this is not something they can keep doing. And for the children and grandchildren going to suffer, not going they already are, homeless and hungry. I was a republican, no longer will I be.

Comment posted July 6, 2010 @ 1:56 pm

Estimated 2 million Americans lose benifits by 7/10/10
1)Avg.unemployment check $300 per week
2)$300x2million=$600million per week not going in economy
3)$300×10%=$30 FED TAXES per week
4)$30x2million=$60 million FED TAXES not collected per week
SENATES VACATION RESULTS: More Homeless Families,Forclosures,Bankruptcy,No Sales,More Layoffs,ETC>

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Comment posted July 6, 2010 @ 2:49 pm

I was a Reagen Republican for over 25 years but I will never vote for another republican for as long as I live. They are the most insensitive, arrogant, mean spirited, out of touch, kick you when your down, anti-poor, anti-unemployed, anti-family, anti-have-nots, anti-American bunch of jerks who incidentally live quite comfortably and quite large on the public dollar. Their hubris sickens me.

Comment posted July 6, 2010 @ 3:44 pm

well, because the unemployment has been terminated for so many people in our county, I like these others that lost their only means of something went to the food stamp office to apply for food stamps. What normally would take a couple of hours and get an appt. to set them up, they are sooooo backlogged that I don't get an appt. until next Tuesday. This does not bother me, as I will find someway to eat in the meantime, but as I looked around at the very crowded building, I thought to myself, I am lucky as it is only myself and my husband who is also without an unemployment check, to feed. What about all of these poor children. I don't think we are going into another recession folks, we have passed this, and it WILL be a full blown Depression really soon.

Comment posted July 6, 2010 @ 5:12 pm

I agree with you a 100 and 10 percent. The congress takes a vacation at the peoples expense that can't even eat. People, it is us thats allowing them to do that. Shame on us. We need to put a stop to all the waste in the government. They can take a two week vacation but, we can't eat. That goes right back to “Let them eat cake”.

Comment posted July 6, 2010 @ 5:18 pm

You should put a stop to the waste in the Government. It's our money the refuse to give us, not theirs. Put a stop to it and contact Obama. I really believe he is a good man and out for us as he says he is. Contact him and tell him we are tired of Congress.We are tired of their ways of acting to their bass. We the people are their boss, not the other way around. Let him know we are tired of being treated the way the kings did in the old country. Thats why we came to this one. But, open your eyes, they are turning this country into the old country. Let them it cake still stands here and now.

Comment posted July 6, 2010 @ 5:28 pm

Why should the American people put up with this any longer. These guys let all the jobs go off shore, and were then surprised when the economy tanked. I am sure the number of unemployed is much higher than the 9.5% because they do not measure the unemployed who already used up their benefits. The job market still is bad, bad, bad.

They really do not get it in Washington. I say vote them all out or lay them off like we were…. Time for a new senate/congress.

Comment posted July 6, 2010 @ 7:01 pm

I agree the state of South Carolina needs to look into the Food Stamp program. People that have worked to provide for their families never needing assistance until now cant get at least $100 for food but you have woman having baby after baby just to get mpre than they are already getting. I am a young mother of two because i had to move back in with my parents they will only give me $80 a month. The way prices are jacked up on things now what will $80 get for a whole month. Im like you i would love to have my life back and if Congress had to live in the American peoples shoes for just a month they would understand what we have been going through while they were taking their times passing this bill!

Comment posted July 6, 2010 @ 7:44 pm

Is it true they left unemployment out to dry while they voted themselves in a nice raise? They should not make more than their average constituents. It is up to the American people to straighten everything out. It take guts to stand up to the hiprocacy being perpetrated by our current legislatures. Stand up and boot them all out this next election, and every election. Public service has become the new welfare.

Comment posted July 6, 2010 @ 11:22 pm

Out of sight out of mind. Congress doesn't see the millions of Americans struggling to find jobs, pay mortgages, and food for themselves and families. Bottom line they don't care!! It is all about their needs not someone else's! They don't care that Americans can't pay bills and in a few months will an even bigger recession and mess because they act like stubborn, bullies. People are angry, afraid, and terrified as to what the furture holds. Repulicans claim victory because the national average on jobless has dropped from 9.7 to 9.5! How ridiculous! Where are all the jobs they are going to create so we can go back to work. Sure is not here in California! One of the worst states in the nation right now! My heart is broken for a nation that does not take care of its own!

Comment posted July 6, 2010 @ 11:59 pm

Hope they had food for the 4th of July and it made them sick!! They deserve it!!!

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Comment posted July 7, 2010 @ 2:17 am

I feel that the Senates failure to act is No Less Than Criminal. I am one of the millions of unemployed as is my husband of 25 years. We have both worked since we were 17 and we are now 49 years old. Neither one of us have ever had to file an unemployment claim in our 25 years of Marriage until last year. We are both interviewing for any and every job we can. We have lost our house, 2 cars, all savings and our Medical Insurance. We were both making over 50,0000 yearly so we were not at Poverty level. The issue is by the time Congress does act, how many marriages will be over? how many suicides will have transpired, how many more families will be on the streets? I think all the unemployed in America should join hands at 12:00 Noon (PST) to form a Human Chain stretching across America to 48 of the 50 States. We will ask Hawaii and Alaska to join hands at their State Capital. We need the news to pick up this image af the Human Cost. Please reply to Human Chain of Compassion !

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Comment posted July 7, 2010 @ 2:45 am

I had a nice part time job that paid for our groceries, car insurance, and my car payment. One day I was called into the office and told “Even though we hired you with the understanding that you were in school we have decided that due to the way the economy is headed that a part time worker is not in our best interest, please take your things and just leave now.” That was the first week in February 2009. I now have a BA and was planning on going to graduate school. Those plans are now on hold because I cannot afford to take the GRE or pay for the application to graduate school. I do not just sit on my butt and do nothing. I look for work and have learned that I will only hear a few things from potential employers, “With your education you are over qualified for this position, I am sorry. Your degree makes you a shoe in for this position, but your lack of experience makes it impossible for me to hire you.” The unemployment office's solution is get a second Bachelor's Degree. My husband does have a full time job, but his income alone is not enough to pay our bills. After I lost my job we tried so hard to pay the very few credit card bills we had and keep up on the car payment and car insurance. We fell so far behind, because we were never able to make every payment every month. It was so humiliating when the repo man showed up to take the car, it was one of those nice days outside where all the neighbors are outside sitting around. They all got to watch as he took the car. He was a very nice man, he rang the doorbell and let me get everything out of the car. We did not live way beyond our means. When we bought the car it was out of necessity, we picked a new car but with few features, the total price of the car was only 12,000 and it was brand new. We do not live in a grand home, our house was only 58,000. We did not have a lot of credit cards that had high balances. They were mainly used to get school clothes and help out at Christmas and birthdays. Before long we realized that we were losing everything, because we got so far behind with everyone trying to make sure that each bill got something paid on it. Of course there was not enough money to pay on each bill every month, some companies had to deal with every other month. Even though I was laid off in February, the unemployment office made a mistake so my claim was initially denied, on the grounds that I was a student. Then I had to reapply and finally got a check in May. By then we were already drowning in our financial misery. By August even with my unemployment we had to file chapter 13 bankruptcy. Somehow the mortgage company came up with an additional 10 thousand that we owed them by the time the first of this year came along, not even our lawyer could figure out how they managed that one. Our bankruptcy takes well over half of my husband's checks every month. My unemployment is not anywhere near the 80% they said I would get and now it is gone, because I missed the deadline by 2 days. So we are now a family of 5 living on 800 a month. Our used car gets about 16 mpg and our very used suburban gets about 10 mpg. My hopes for grad school are gone, my hopes for eating everyday are gone, sometimes we can't even afford to drive to church. I am frustrated and sickened by everything going on. I bought a new washer and dryer 16 years ago, last week the washer died, then the a/c went out, a tree from our yard fell and took out the neighbors powerlines, and this morning the gas man came and cut off the gas, because I just did not have the money to pay the bill. What are we suppose to do? What are we suppose to tell our children? We do not have family and friends to help us. We do not get any public assistance, because technically we make too much money because of my husband's job. What the company contributes to the health insurance is listed on his paycheck and that makes our income look 1,300 a month higher than what it is. The lady at the food stamp office said to cancel our health benefits and let them give it to us in his pay, but if we cancel our insurance we do not get that money. I am at a loss as to what to do. I have pawned everything that I had that was worth anything. The only piece of jewelry I have left is my wedding ring. My camera is gone and so is my laptop. I am frustrated and ready to steal a tent and head to the woods and just live out there, at least we can get near a lake out there.

Comment posted July 7, 2010 @ 3:08 am…

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Comment posted July 7, 2010 @ 3:50 am

If feel these idiot congress men and women that were voted in by the United States (people)are not taking care of us. Think twice before you vote. Congress has nothing to worry about look at their wages, insurance benefits, etc. They don't miss a meal, or have their homes taken. Look at us we don't have a chance. They can kiss my ass.

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Comment posted July 7, 2010 @ 10:43 am

People getting welfare and medical and food stamps are treated better than the unemployed worker. The fact that we worked for many years is how they are supported.

Comment posted July 7, 2010 @ 1:21 pm

THE SENATE GOES ON PAID VACATION: The U.S. SENATE should be ashamed of themselves.Leaving 2 million AMERICANS UNDER THE BUS!
Did they forget that unemployed people can still vote? Or are they working on taking that away to!! The SENATE should have to live like the unemployed,then take a vote! We spend money in wars,then re-build their economy,but not at home? You see on the news ,people in other countries,going without. Why don't they ever show people in this country? The SENATE has lost touch with everyday AMERICANS! AMERICANS HELP AMERICANS ,NOT THEMSELVES SENATORS!!!!!!! JUST PLAIN SELFISH!!!

Comment posted July 7, 2010 @ 1:29 pm

Lets hope no one dies in this heat because they could not pay their electric bills because the Senate failed to pass extentions for the unemployed now that might be a law suit happening wow sue the ones in the Senate that voted no. i know this sounds silly but it can happen the heat is terrible and i know i do not turn mine on so how many others dont or cant

Comment posted July 7, 2010 @ 7:26 pm

Roughly…about 6 or 7 yrs ago, I was living in a state which had just elected the new mayor in their capitol city. His FIRST point of business was to give himself a substantial cut in pay! (if I remember correctly about 12%) Then he went down the ranks doing the same! Some objected but couldn’t say much as he started with himself and the percentage, if I recall correctly, was lower for others! Once settled in, he made a trip with the governor to another state with severe deficit problems to have a meeting to swap ideas on steps to take. The 2 of them flew 3rd class, stayed in a Motel 6, drove around in their modest Hertz rental car, and ate mostly at a McD’s! ALL AT THEIR OWN EXPENSE – NOT THE TAXPAYER’S!!! Some reading this probably know who I am referring to, as this certainly is not the ‘norm’! I had moved to another state not long after, so I don’t know if this kind of dedication to the people of the state continued.
What I do know is that the vast majority of politicians, in this scenario, would get elected and give themselves a nice big fat raise! And raises to all their buddies in offices down the line, along with lots of perks! Then they would make such a trip as indicated by flying 1st class, staying in the finest hotel, eating in the finest restaurants, while being chauffeured everywhere in a limo!!!….all at the expense of the taxpayers in their states!!!!…..not to mention perks like gifts for their relatives, etc all written off as business expenses!!!!! And our economy, at that time, was nowhere near the mess it is now!!!! And these are the politicians who are living it up at the expense of the voters who put them in office!!! Many who have lost their homes and are on the streets as the taxes they paid into the system for years are being used to support some rich politician’s dirty lifestyle!!!….while these people (who voted them into their ‘ritzy job’ can’t get an unemployment extension to get their heads above water long enough to get another job and get back into some kind of – ANY kind of – lifestyle!!!
I believe senators and congressmen should be making about $30,000 – $40,000 /yr (with no perks)!!!!! That would ‘weed out’ many of the ones who are deceiving the voters and are really just looking out for themselves!!!! This and a BAN ON LOBBYING would be an excellent 1st step on US citizens getting honest representation!!!!

Comment posted July 8, 2010 @ 2:43 am

I thought our politicians republican, democrat, or independent are representative of american people for better or poor, sickness and in health until they break us apart. We elected all these politicians to be our voice in congress and in the senate but unfortunately to say, they only look into themselves and their pockets. All of them lived in big mansions with so many servants with nice cars, nice suits and shoes not made in USA. The only good thing in our country is FREEDOM.

Comment posted July 8, 2010 @ 3:54 pm

What kind of society squanders its future, . . its wealth, its dreams, its children, . . in the killing of others?

What kind of society cuts aid to poor schoolchildren so millionaires can get tax breaks?

What kind of society commits naked aggression, the mass killing of Shock and Awe against a civilian populace, distorts and perverts our moral fiber to inflict physical and mental torture against those unable to resist?

Comment posted July 8, 2010 @ 4:30 pm

How sad is it when young AMERICANS can not find a job and have to go in the military for work? Is that why Republicans have wars that are not paid for,and that's OK? Then they spend Billions replacing what they destroy in their unfunded war! But yet will not help AMERICAN FAMILIES IN NEED? What is wrong with the U.S. SENATE? It seems as though it is about what they want,not what about AMERICAN FAMILIES NEED!!! Are the SENATORS going without? OF COURSE NOT!! We should lay them off and replace them with lower paid SENATORS like their rich friends did to us,and take away their rich friends tax breaks,and sending jobs over seas.It seems as long as the SENATE can keep living their life style,they really don't care about AMERICAN FAMILIES!!! It is time to vote in EVERYDAY AMERICANS ,who have lived in the real world! The SENATE has lost touch with everyday AMERICANS!!!
I hope they have not forgot unemployed people can vote,unless they are going to say NO to that also!! WRITE THEM>E-MAIL THEM>CALL THEM!!
Let them know how you feel!!1

Comment posted July 8, 2010 @ 7:02 pm

Unemployed Americans Are Suffering Plain and Simple Fact. Go to Facebook and go to!/pages/Hands…

Comment posted July 8, 2010 @ 7:08 pm

Please go to the link Hands Across America Human Unemployment Chain & Click Like. Feel free to leave your comments. If you can forward the link to 10 people and ask them to forward to 10 people it can make a difference. We are hoping to send a show of Support for all the families suffering. Yes it is this War and look at the costs to our own Americans right here on American Soil. We are the Casualties of War !

Comment posted July 8, 2010 @ 7:26 pm

The waiting game??? Stop waiting and email/ write/ call your Congressman and the President and say, ” My taxes bailed out the rich folks. Now you won't help me?”

Don't wait, get mad. Congress has the power to help you if you insist they do it.
Don't you see you are pawns of the political partisan stupidity that is running Congress. GET MAD TELL them people are more important than politics and money. Tell them YOU VOTE FOR CONGRESS PEOPLE THAT HELP CITIZENS.

GET MAD!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! CALL, EMAIL, WRITE Demonstrate. GET MAD.

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Comment posted July 9, 2010 @ 4:51 pm

So, if Congress gets a vacation but the rest of us who are living hand to mouth on are unemployment checks. After a year of searching for a job, I still have no job and now now unemployment check. Thanks Congress for screwing us little people around….. Gotta love that powerless feeling that Congress left us in. How about the Congress supporting those who just lost their unemployment because they wanted to go on “vacation.” This really sucks!!

Comment posted July 9, 2010 @ 8:20 pm

If the republicans are insisting upon finding money to “pay” for unemployment benefits, maybe they should consider trimming down their ONE HUNDRED SEVENTY-FIVE THOUSAND $175,000. IN SALARY PLUS BENEFITS —- FOR THE REST OF THEIR DAMNED LIVES!!!!! And they want to squabble about us sitting around refusing to look for work. they are out of touch and i just hope america gets out to vote to get rid of these republicans.

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Comment posted July 10, 2010 @ 4:51 am

I called many Senators offices and spoke to office staff or left a message on their voice mail. I also left my email address and sometimes my phone number. No Republicans responded. I received email letters from the offices of Senators Lieberman and Boxer. I often email members of congress re:health care and unemployment. I am a disabled/retired registered nurse fro the San Francisco East Bay Area. We need Barbara Boxer.

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Comment posted July 10, 2010 @ 1:13 pm

1)Avg unemployment check $300per week
2)$300×2 million=$600 million not going in economy per week
3)$300×10%=$30 FED TAXES per week
4)$30×2 million=$60 million FED TAXES not collected per week
1) More Homeless FAMILIES
2) Forclosures Up
3) Bankruptcy Up
4) No Sales
5) More Layoffs ETC.
It is time they got layed-off due to lost tax revenue,like their BIG BUSINESS FRIENDS did to us,when not enough money was coming in
How long before Republicans will say NO to letting the unemployed VOTE?
Vote them out,let them know they to can be unemployed.

Comment posted July 10, 2010 @ 5:31 pm

Hope you get what you need.


Comment posted July 11, 2010 @ 4:45 am

They won't care until someone goes postal…

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Comment posted July 12, 2010 @ 11:17 am

i think that Savings Dwindling Millions Of Unemployed Play The Waiting Game. After Attempting To Gain Cloture And Move Forward!

Comment posted July 12, 2010 @ 4:03 pm

I was no hoping not to have to get food stamps or medical help but I have to feed my daughter. I, too, was on unemployment for the first time in my life. Why do we pay taxes, so congress can have awesome paychecks and great vacations. I couldn't tell you the last time I went on a vacation. Enough is enough. How much more can they screw us and get away with it.

Comment posted July 12, 2010 @ 5:23 pm

Will Congress be voting today on whether to extend the Benefits?

Comment posted July 12, 2010 @ 6:05 pm

The Republicans should do a soul searching on how they got their seat in the Senate and who put them their which i of course the american public. If the politicians are actually for american people and they want to help us survive the current recession our country is having, they should trimmed down their salary and benefits and become the hero of the american people and not by just bitching about the current trillion debts we have now. All politicians should be supportive of all american goals and should worked bi-partisan and not think of their own pocket. The Federal government had said that unemployment claims have subsided on their recent records which is untrue because some people who have their unemployment benefits have been maximized and lapsed can't file anymore an unemployment so naturally the claim records have gone down.

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Pingback posted July 12, 2010 @ 7:10 pm

[...] on the heels of a bad week of economic and political news for struggling Americans. The Senate failed to pass a jobs bill late Thursday, which would have extended unemployment insurance benefits for the long-term [...]

Comment posted July 13, 2010 @ 7:14 am

unfortunately with my master's degree……trying to figure how to put fudgy figures and job descriptions on my resume to cater to various available jobs – just to get an interview (having to dumb the resume down immensely). It is ok to answer one question, but tough to work through multiple questions on job experience. I don't want to appear so overqualified…….my God, I will do worthy, miniscule work if need be. Down to $10 in my bank account and that has been with some luck. Hopefully there are not small families in terrible situations right now. Luckiy I am single and apparently I will be for a long time….having been kicked in the teeth the past couple years with the economy and it's destructive trickle down. For eating purposes, what can I do in the meantime for 2 weeks from today when it appears there will be renewed benefits, once signed into law by the president??

It is not the hunger we all see on tv with people in third world countries…..but I am wondering what I should do in the mean time. Lookin for a good tree to shimmy up and chop coconuts down somewhere……and it is so hot here in Las Vegas. Ughh.

Comment posted July 13, 2010 @ 2:13 pm

I left a comment on my situation last week. This is an update. I will be picking up boxes today. I have turned off pretty much everything. Cut back on gas, no spending anywhere. Not even groceries. I now have an ID card for the local food bank, but it seems that has only stocked my cabinets with small bags of rice, beans and lentils and canned carrots and green beans. I cam only eat so much rice in a given day. the only thing I have kept is car insurance and internet, but that is going by the wayside shortly.
If Congress thought that we were out here just playing with our measly unemployment checks, then they are going to be in for a real wake up call when they realize that we have still don't have job BECAUSE THERE AREN'T any. The only thing that they have managed to do is hurry us along straight for collapse of everything.
With that unemployment money, at least we were able to eat, color my hair from the grey to black so that I look younger while applying for a job. Now it sits with the grey growing out. the money gave us gas to go and look for work, to send out resumes, fax papers and stay connected to the internet to update on news apply for jobs etc.
If I don't find the money for the rent this month I will have to move out in 15 days. I fortunately can still think somewhat rationally in the mists of all of this.
My sister can only help so much, she is helping her son who is unemployed with 4 small children make his house payment.
I did get a roommate for a day, but the office said no and then I found out that the person lived here before and was dealing drugs and wild parties..
Now after this I am wondering why Obama (sorry i just can't refer to him as our President) ( It makes me want to puke) was so concerned with the health care issue–heck I am am so broke now that I qualify for California's version of Medicaid–Wait maybe that was what Obama meant when he said that he was going to provided health care for everyone–yes i think that is it—makes us all unemployed, then take away the unemployment so we have no resources to look for work– and health care for all.
I believe that there are evil things going on and that this was the intent of our government. People just became complacent, people are easier to control if they are dependent on you. So, they are trying to make us dependent on the government.
It reminds me of Katrina. My question has always been–why did the people stay in the coliseum or the stadium or what ever it was, rather than getting out?? Because they were told to? With all the bad that was going on I don't think that anyone could have kept me inside. But my understanding, correct me if I am wrong is that most of these people were poor, and dependent on the system and It didn't change, even when their lives and the safety of their family was at risk. Is this what we have become as a nation.
Compliance, and we listen to all of the idiots and take no responsibility for our selves.
I only laugh now when a company sends a letter saying they hired someone else or i didn't fit the criteria. I am the best at what I do, that I do know, so i only watch the companies and send a follow up letter and tell them thank you for the rejection and that I will continue to watch them struggle because not hiring me explains the bad choices the company is ,making. Then they have the nerve to call me and ask me questions about ideas I have–but i no longer give that out to them, i am not helping them for free.
So. I am ok, I might end up homeless in the mist of this but this whole mess but it won't change who i am and they can't take anything from me because I am not willing to give up what of myself I have left.
Be strong!

Comment posted July 13, 2010 @ 2:40 pm

Hi Diana and everyone facing similar situations. I'm always looking for people to speak with on this topic — you can get me on if you'd care to talk.

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Comment posted July 13, 2010 @ 6:07 pm

I'm getting feet up congress siting on butts and make more money then I can dream of.they make me sick.what if they lost there job and there benefits,trying to fright for there benefits then what! We work hard for are money.They have no right taking are money away.They should pass Extension,cause it the right thing to do!

Comment posted July 13, 2010 @ 8:23 pm

Well I just got off the site they are saying that the vote for the extension is suppose to be July 19th. They are waiting for the Gov. of WVA to appoint someone to take over Sen. Byrd seat. So, maybe with all of us praying for a positive outcome before then, we may just beable to start to live again after then. It has been really hard for our family, as I know it has been with all of you. So far we have stayed strong. But for all of you that plan to vote in November, I think you all should make a change. I myself have decided not to vote this November, or ever for that matter. Because if you ask me, ALL politicans are the same. They are looking at that brass ring, and will tell the people anything they want to hear, to achieve that brass ring. And then, when they have it, we the voters do not exsist anylonger. There was a time when I could actually say I was proud of this country, but so many things have changed. The country is more willing to help out the citizens that are in other countries, than they are in their own. This country is more interested in helping out BIG MONEY (paid for with OUR money) than to lend some helping hands out to their citizens. Sure there are some people out there that do not want this extension to go through. Those are the ones that are still employed. They have not yet walked in our shoes. They may never have to during these hard times, but then again, they may. Then I am sure they will be singing the same tune we are. But on that note: thank you for letting me vent, and all of my thoughts are with all of you everyday. SERIOUSLY!!! Stay strong, and WE WILL get through this mess. Hopefully after July 19th, and I pray that we all get employment, so that we can stand on our own, and not be like puppets in the hands of all of those so called puppet masters there in Washington.

Comment posted July 13, 2010 @ 10:10 pm

hang in there.. they are suppose to vote on July 19th. Keep your fingers crossed that some of them read our comments on here.

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Comment posted July 16, 2010 @ 7:58 pm

This 2.4 million unemployed will not only hinder the economic growth but also push the mortgage industry to another low. People will no longer be able to afford the houses, mortgage payments, most of the help/assistance are over and the banks are not ready to provide further assistance. Furthermore, refinancing issues are far too many. Congress took a very nice time to take off, i thought that they were supposed to be open during the July4th week in tough times…especially when it concerns millions of people. I can understand that they are people as well and need breaks; but at the cost of jeopardizing earnings of millions. I hope the off time was worth it.
This system is kinda messed up as Obama promised 90 some weeks of benefits in case of emergency, what about us.
They are still focusing on passing billd regarding the financial markets and not focusing on key issues like unemployment. Jobs are being created, so they say, where??? Outsourcing is still at its all time high and jobs are being shipped to all the consulting services to save costs, we are the ones suffering.
where is the value for protectionism…companies should be questioned about the job applications and their selection processes.

Comment posted July 18, 2010 @ 12:27 am

The republican’s weren’t worried about the deficit when that big insurance company and their friends the Wall Street execs were giving themselves bonuses with taxpayer money!!! Next election – let Congress feel the sting of the unemployment lines!!! No more raping and pillaging the middle class!!! – How many years have you paid taxes? 30? 40? Your government bails out bankers and Wall Street execs using your tax dollars – but unemployment is allowed to expire? What happened to “by the people” or “for the people”? Or are the big campaign contributors the only “people” who count to congress? They are playing games AGAIN FOR THE THIRD TIME while you are wondering how to feed your kids? Figure it out! Malfeasance – Failure of a public official to perform their duties!!! Next Election MAKE YOURSELF MATTER BY VOTING!!! 10% unemployment carries 10% of the vote! Use it!! Fire them all next election or recall every Congress member NOW for Malfeasance – Failure of a public official to perform their duties!!! Next Election – Lets get people elected who actually represent all the People- this current congress represents only special interest groups!

Don’t re-elect or even better Recall your senator or congressman that voted no to extended benefits.Failur of an elected official to do their job is malfeasance.

Here's how you do it:

go to:…

The list is as follows:


The senators voting no are:

Alexander (R-TN)
Barrasso (R-WY)
Bennett (R-UT)
Bond (R-MO)
Brown (R-MA)
Brownback (R-KS)
Bunning (R-KY)
Burr (R-NC)
Chambliss (R-GA)
Coburn (R-OK)
Cochran (R-MS)
Collins (R-ME)
Corker (R-TN)
Cornyn (R-TX)
Crapo (R-ID)

DeMint (R-SC)
Ensign (R-NV)
Enzi (R-WY)
Graham (R-SC)
Grassley (R-IA)
Gregg (R-NH)
Hatch (R-UT)
Hutchison (R-TX)
Inhofe (R-OK)
Isakson (R-GA)
Johanns (R-NE)
Kyl (R-AZ)
LeMieux (R-FL)
Lugar (R-IN)
McCain (R-AZ)
McConnell (R-KY)
Nelson (D-NE)
Risch (R-ID)
Roberts (R-KS)
Sessions (R-AL)
Shelby (R-AL)
Snowe (R-ME)
Thune (R-SD)
Vitter (R-LA)
Voinovich (R-OH)
Wicker (R-MS)
Alexander (R-TN)
Barrasso (R-WY)
Bennett (R-UT)
Bond (R-MO)
Brown (R-MA)
Brownback (R-KS)
Bunning (R-KY)
Burr (R-NC)
Chambliss (R-GA)
Coburn (R-OK)
Cochran (R-MS)
Collins (R-ME)
Corker (R-TN)
Cornyn (R-TX)
Crapo (R-ID)
DeMint (R-SC)
Ensign (R-NV)
Enzi (R-WY)
Graham (R-SC)
Grassley (R-IA)
Gregg (R-NH)
Hatch (R-UT)
Hutchison (R-TX)
Inhofe (R-OK)
Isakson (R-GA)
Johanns (R-NE)
Kyl (R-AZ)
LeMieux (R-FL)
Lugar (R-IN)
McCain (R-AZ)
McConnell (R-KY)
Nelson (D-NE)
Risch (R-ID)
Roberts (R-KS)
Sessions (R-AL)
Shelby (R-AL)
Snowe (R-ME)
Thune (R-SD)
Vitter (R-LA)
Voinovich (R-OH)
Wicker (R-MS)

If one of these is your senators, and you live in the right state, start a recall or don’t re-elect!!!

Renee Mueller
Comment posted July 18, 2010 @ 7:52 am

The senate has to pass the bill coming up on the 20th. If they don't, there will be dire consequences. More dire than we've already seen in the last few months. My benefits ended June 2nd and have received no good news since. Please help us to get back on our feet, get jobs going again and soon unemployment could be a thing of the past.

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Comment posted July 29, 2010 @ 4:55 am

The senate has to pass the bill coming up on the 20th. If they don't, there will be dire consequences. More dire than we've already seen in the last few months. My benefits ended June 2nd and have received no good news since. Please help us to get back on our feet, get jobs going again and soon unemployment could be a thing of the past.

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Comment posted August 1, 2010 @ 6:31 am

The senate has to pass the bill coming up on the 20th. If they don't, there will be dire consequences. More dire than we've already seen in the last few months. My benefits ended June 2nd and have received no good news since. Please help us to get back on our feet, get jobs going again and soon unemployment could be a thing of the past.

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