The Washington PostDemocracy Dies in Darkness

Unemployment insurance extension clears key hurdle in Senate

The Senate narrowly cleared a key procedural hurdle Tuesday in the bid to extend unemployment benefits for the long-term jobless, with most Republicans refusing to support the extension without corresponding budget cuts.

On a 60 to 37 roll call, Democrats just cleared the 60-vote hurdle needed to move on to a full debate of the legislation. The final outcome of the legislation remains in doubt, as several Republicans supported this maneuver to begin the debate process hoping to negotiate further changes to the $6.5 billion legislation.