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Ohio's Brown expects Senate to extend benefits for jobless this week


Web Editor
M.L. Schultze
Ohio Senator Sherrod Brown thinks extension of both unemployment benefits and a subsidy for health insurance for people who have lost their jobs could be voted on by the Senate this week.

Senate Democrats want to extend the benefits through December. They also want to continue helping states to pay for Medicaid -- a program that provides healthcare to poor people. Extending all three programs would cost an estimated 100 billion dollars.

But Brown says the nation can't afford to let the benefits expire. He says the COBRA health benefits, especially, are beyond many people's reach.

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Congress first decided to temporarily subsidize  65 percent of the health insurance costs last year, when the economy began bleeding jobs. 

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