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Statement of Chairman Tom Harkin (D-IA) on Latest Jobs Report Congress Should Extend Unemployment Insurance in Light of New Unemployment Numbers

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Senator Tom Harkin (D-IA), Chairman of the Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor and Pensions (HELP), today released the following statement reacting to the U.S. Department of Labor’s monthly jobs report.    According to the report, the economy lost 263,000 jobs in September and the unemployment rate rose to 9.8 percent.

“We have always known that the damage done to our economy could not be turned around overnight. But for the working families across the country who are sitting around the kitchen table wondering how they will make ends meet after they’ve exhausted their unemployment benefits, today’s jobs numbers are unsettling. These individuals need a safety net to cover basic expenses such as food, heat and shelter while they continue to look hard for work. For that reason, Congress should act quickly to extend unemployment insurance benefits to all states.

“Our economy is starting to turn around; but until it does, we need to provide families with support. That’s the best way to keep our economy moving toward a full recovery.”