Congressman Jared Huffman

Representing the 2nd District of California

Rep. Huffman, Freshman House Democrats Call on Speaker Boehner: Schedule Immediate Vote to Extend Emergency Unemployment Insurance

Jan 9, 2014
Press Release
49 Members of Congress Say Constituents Deserve Up-or-Down Vote

WASHINGTON­—Congressman Jared Huffman (D-San Rafael) and 48 other freshman House Democrats today urged Speaker of the House John Boehner to schedule an immediate, up-or-down vote to extend emergency unemployment insurance for the 1.3 million Americans who lost their benefits due to congressional inaction at the end of 2013.

Huffman is also a cosponsor of H.R. 3546, which would immediately extend emergency unemployment insurance for an additional year.

“As members of the freshman class, we are writing to request an immediate, up-or-down vote to extend long-term unemployment insurance for 1.3 million Americans,” the letter reads.

“Mr. Speaker, our constituents elected us to Congress to govern. The American people deserve an immediate vote to extend unemployment insurance benefits. Congress – and our economy – cannot afford to sit idle as so many Americans desperately wait for us to act,” the letter continues.

After Congress let federal unemployment insurance benefits expire on Dec. 28 of last year, $400 million was drained from state economies according to a new study. In California alone, 213,793 people lost benefits on Dec. 28, and 1.9 million more Americans will lose unemployment benefits in the first half of this year without Congressional action.

A copy of the letter to Speaker Boehner may be found HERE and below.

January 9, 2014

Hon. John A. Boehner
Speaker of the House
U.S. House of Representatives
H-232, The Capitol
Washington, DC 20515

Dear Speaker Boehner,

As members of the freshman class, we are writing to request an immediate, up-or-down vote to extend long-term unemployment insurance for 1.3 million Americans.

Our constituents elected us to Congress to tackle the critical issues facing the country. One of the largest issues confronting our economy and families now is the recent expiration of long-term unemployment insurance for 1.3 million Americans. It’s time for Congress to govern and act and not leave these people behind.

It is unconscionable that Congress would fail to extend unemployment benefits to over a million long-term unemployed Americans who continue to look for work. Unfortunately, Congress’ continued failure to immediately extend these benefits is also harming our economic recovery.

According to the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office, extending unemployment benefits would actually boost GDP and increase full-time employment. Conversely, failing to act will continue to hinder our economic recovery. In addition, failing to act now means millions of long-term unemployed Americans will continue to face significant hardships as they are trying to get back on their feet and into the workforce.

Simply, Congress’ failure to extend long-term unemployment benefits is poor economic policy and a devastating blow to families who continue to struggle. For these reasons, it is time for the House of Representatives to act. The Senate has already begun consideration to extend long-term unemployment benefits. The House should as well– without further delay.

Mr. Speaker, our constituents elected us to Congress to govern. The American people deserve an immediate vote to extend unemployment insurance benefits. Congress – and our economy – cannot afford to sit idle as so many Americans desperately wait for us to act.

Sincerely yours,

Jared Huffman (CA-02)
Dan Kildee (MI-05)
Patrick E. Murphy (FL-18)
Donald M. Payne Jr. (NJ-10)
Grace Meng (NY-06)
Robin Kelly (IL-02)
Denny Heck (WA-10)
Marc Veasey (TX-33)
Steven Horsford (NV-04)
Joyce Beatty (OH-03)
Julia Brownley (CA-26)
Juan Vargas (CA-51)
Ann Kirkpatrick (AZ-01)
Lois Frankel (FL-22)
Joe Garcia (FL-26)
Katherine Clark (MA-05)
Mark Pocan (WI-02)
Derek Kilmer (WA-06)
Cheri Bustos (IL-17)
Elizabeth Esty (CT-05)
Beto O’Rourke (TX-16)
Hakeem Jeffries (NY-08)
Matt Cartwright (PA-17)
Tony Cárdenas (CA-29)
Rick M. Nolan (MN-08)
Joseph P. Kennedy III (MA-04)
Suzan K. Delbene (WA-01)
Gloria Negrete Mcleod (CA-35)
Ann Mclane Kuster (NH-02)
Dan Maffei (NY-24)
Ami Bera (CA-07)
Alan Lowenthal (CA-47)
Tammy Duckworth (IL-08)
Raul Ruiz (CA-36)
Brad Schneider (IL-10)
Michelle Lujan Grisham (NM-01)
John Delaney (MD-06)
Sean Patrick Maloney (NY-18)
Scott Peters (CA-52)
Eric Swalwell (CA-15)
Filemon Vela (TX-34)
Alan Grayson (FL-09)
Mark Takano (CA-41)
Bill Foster (IL-11)
Kyrsten Sinema (AZ-09)
William L. Enyart (IL-12)
Joaquin Castro (TX-20)
Tulsi Gabbard (HI-02)
Pete P. Gallego (TX-23)

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