Reid sets up test vote on jobless aid

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Associated Press

Posted on February 4, 2014 at 3:01 PM

Updated Tuesday, Feb 4 at 3:03 PM

WASHINGTON (AP) — Democrats controlling the Senate have set up a test vote on Thursday for the party's new plan to extend unemployment benefits for people who have been out of work for more than six months.

The latest plan would extend long-term jobless benefits for three months at a cost of almost $7 billion, paid for by a tweak to pension law that Republicans call a gimmick.

Democrats don't expect the measure to get enough GOP support to overcome a filibuster threshold of 60 votes. Democrats control the Senate with 55 votes and so far expect just three Republicans to join with them. They are Susan Collins of Maine, Dean Heller of Nevada and Lisa Murkowski of Alaska.

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