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Senate advances unemployment bill

With a 65-34 vote, the Senate advanced legislation to restore federal employment benefits, which will likely clear the way for passage and would extend federal unemployment insurance for five months, The Hill reports.

The vote sets up 30 hours of debate before proceeding to the bill, but lawmakers have said they expect a vote on final passage by Friday. Sens. Jack Reed (D-R.I.) and Dean Heller (R-Nev.) have put together a plan that would provide retroactive benefits to more than 2 million people who lost their benefits after the program expired on Dec. 28.

While the Senate hasn’t passed two other extensions, there are five Republican co-sponsors, which means it could overcome the 60-vote filibuster threshold.

Via The Hill