WASHINGTON – U.S. Senator Benjamin L. Cardin (D-MD) today hailed Senate passage of legislation to extend unemployment insurance benefits (UI) until Nov. 30, 2010 during what has been called the most severe economic recession our nation has experienced since the Great Depression.
Passage of legislation to extend UI benefits has been delayed since May. The delay has already hurt more than 19,000 Marylanders who have lost their benefits, costing the state’s economy approximately $6 million a week. Nationally, 2.5 million Americans have lost their benefits, costing the economy approximately $775 million a week.
“In times of severe economic dislocation, Congress has always passed bipartisan legislation extending unemployment benefits. Economists across the spectrum agree that ending these benefits now would exacerbate the situation, yet there has been resistance to passing such emergency legislation. UI benefits pump approximately $6 million into our state’s economy. These benefits provide a much-needed safety net for unemployed Marylanders and help stabilize our state’s economy. Now is not the time to cut off desperate Americans who cannot find work through no fault of their own.”