Senate nears passage of jobless benefit bill

Associated Press

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Senate is closing in on passage of election-year legislation to restore jobless benefits for the long-term unemployed that expired late last year.

But approval on Monday would send the legislation to a hostile reception in the House, where majority Republicans generally oppose it.

The bill was the first major piece of legislation that Democrats sent to the floor of the Senate when Congress convened early in the year. It was the linchpin of a broader campaign-season agenda meant to showcase concern for men and women disadvantaged in an era of economic disparity between rich and poor.

In the months since, they have alternately pummeled Republicans for holding up its passage, and made concessions to gain support from enough GOP lawmakers to overcome a filibuster.

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