WASHINGTON, D.C. (Dec. 11, 2013) – Congresswoman Kaptur (OH-9) today joined 165 Democrats today in urging Speaker John Boehner to allow a vote on extension of federal unemployment benefits before the House adjourns for the year.

“Congress should not go home before extending jobless benefits,” said Congresswoman Kaptur. “We simply can’t leave more than a million Americans out in the cold.”

She noted that an extension of unemployment benefits is particularly important to Ohio, where unemployment exceeds the national average and in fact is moving in the opposite direction. The national unemployment rate fell from 7.9% to 7.3% between October 2012 and October of this year, but the jobless rate in Ohio increased 6.9% to 7.5% in the same time period.

“With unemployment increasing Ohio, this is certainly not the time to cut benefits,” said Congresswoman Kaptur. “For many families, the job opportunities simply aren’t there and jobless aid is a real lifeline.”

Congresswoman Kaptur said failure to extend benefits would work serious hardship on jobless families and their communities. She noted that jobless workers spend their unemployment benefits essentials such as food and gasoline, thus providing important demand for local businesses throughout Ohio.
“Cutting benefits at this time will hurt Ohio and its economy,” she said.

Extended benefits are scheduled to expire on December 28. If federal unemployment insurance expires, approximately 1.3 million Americans will immediately lose jobless aid. Another 1.9 million Americans would lose their eligibility for coverage during the first six months of next year.