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Don't be 'cruel': President Obama wants emergency unemployment benefits restored

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Denying financial security to people looking for jobs or learning a new skill is "just plain cruel," according to President Barack Obama who made the statement in his weekly address on Saturday.

Referring to an extension of emergency unemployment insurance, Obama is urging Congress to restore benefits for more than one million Americans, according to the VOAnews. In the story, Obama said he would sign a three-month extension of unemployment benefits if congress passes it.

From the White House press transcript, Obama stated:

"Just this week, the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office predicted that allowing benefits to expire will be a drag on our economic growth next year. A report by the Department of Labor and my Council of Economic Advisors estimated that it could cost businesses 240,000 jobs. And without the ability to feed their families or pay the bills, many people currently looking for work could stop looking for good."

Scheduled to return from his own vacation on Sunday, according to the HuffingtonPost, Obama's help on the issue likely will come from Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid. Reid has scheduled a vote for Monday night on a bill that would reinstate the benefits for three months.

Aides have said that January's agenda is packed and will keep the president in Washington for much of the lead up to his State of the Union address, according to Huffington Post. Short domestic trips are not ruled out, however.

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