PROVISION OF A 5-MONTH EXTENSION OF THE TEMPORARY EXTENDED UNEMPLOYMENT COMPENSATION ACT OF 2002
Mr. SANTORUM. Mr. President, my understanding is this unemployment extension mirrors the unemployment extension we did in the last session of Congress. We extended benefits for 13 weeks.
There are some for which the 26 weeks plus the 13 weeks have expired. I assume the million people we are talking about are those people in places where there is not high unemployment, who do not qualify for an additional 13 weeks above the 13 weeks that have already been extended.
As you know, under this bill, as under the prior bill, in States where there are high rates of unemployment, people do get 26 weeks, the 13 plus 13. So what you are talking about is a million people, in places where there are lower rates of unemployment, not getting an additional 13 weeks on top of the 13 weeks they now get on top of the 26 weeks which the original unemployment act provided.
So when we talk about people being left out, what we are talking about is a change in what the original extension is. I am not too sure that is being left out. Those are people who went through their 26 weeks, went through their 13 weeks, and have still not been able to find a job but are not in States with high unemployment.
So what we are doing is extending last year's unemployment benefits to this year. I think that is a fair way to start. It is a way to get things done. If you want to change unemployment extension and turn it into 26 weeks, we can have that debate. But to suggest we are leaving people out, I am not too sure that is really what is factually happening in this situation.