Just in from the office of Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.): the upper chamber will hold a procedural vote next Tuesday afternoon to proceed to legislation extending unemployment insurance (UI) nationwide.
The cloture vote is indication that Reid and GOP leaders failed to reach an agreement on amendments to the bill, which would extend UI benefits by 14 weeks in all states, and an additional six weeks in states where unemployment rates top 8.5 percent.
Party leaders have been haggling for weeks over amendments, with GOP leaders urging votes on provisions addressing their concerns over immigration and ACORN, among other issues. Republicans also wanted to fund the UI extension with unspent stimulus money instead of extending a business tax that’s slated to expire, as Democrats have proposed.
The House last month passed a similar bill, extending the benefits by 13 weeks only in states with unemployment rates of 8.5 percent or more.