Local News

By Rick Howlett

U.S. Senator Jim Bunning has dropped his objection to a $10 billion legislative package that contains an extension of unemployment benefits for more than one million Americans.

The Republican would not allow the measure to advance, saying he didn’t want to add to the budget deficit. He wanted the programs in the bill to be paid for with existing funds.       

He dropped his objection after a vote was allowed Tuesday night on his amendment to pay for the package.

It failed 53-43 on a procedural vote.

The extension of benefits then passed by a vote of 78-19.

Bunning’s blockage of the measure drew harsh criticism from Democrats and others, while some Republicans said they supported his maneuver. Others began to raise concerns about the damage the delay was causing.

Rick Howlett is host of WFPL's weekly talk show, "In Conversation."