Stories of Americans Cut Off of Emergency Unemployment Compensation

It was a long and cold winter in Washington, DC, in more ways than one. At the end of 2013, Congress allowed Emergency Unemployment Compensation (EUC) to expire, leaving 1.3 million Americans who had been without work for more than six months suddenly cut off from their lifeline benefits. Unemployment benefits don't provide a lot – about $269 a week on average – but it is enough to put some food on the table, pay the most urgent bills, and hang on by your fingernails until work can be found. Without this support, many families are forced to drain their retirement accounts and sell their belongings. Some face homelessness.

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Senate Mandates Private Tax Collectors, Despite Past Failures

On April 3, the Senate Finance Committee unanimously approved a package of tax breaks, heavily tilted to corporations that will cost the Treasury an estimated $85 billion this year. Most of these tax giveaways were part of a package known as “tax extenders” that expired at the end of last year.

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Government in Action: Eradicating Polio

In the early part of the 20th century, polio ravaged America. Caused by a communicable virus, polio can devastate the central nervous system and lead to paralysis that makes breathing and walking difficult. Many young victims spent long periods of time encased in metal tubes, known as iron lungs, which helped them to breathe. Others were consigned to leg braces to help them walk. President Franklin D. Roosevelt was America’s most famous polio patient.

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Information for Economic Opportunity: Ensuring Equal Pay through Transparency

Today is Equal Pay Day, the date representing how far into the new year the average woman would have to work in order to earn the same as the average man did in the previous year. In recognition, President Obama took executive actions and the Senate began work on a bill, all aimed at closing the pay gap and ensuring women earn equal pay for equal work. Each of these efforts is based on the same premise: that better access to information can expand economic opportunity.

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Emergency Unemployment Benefits Bill Passes the Senate, Increasing Pressure on the House

The Senate voted to extend the emergency unemployment compensation program yesterday evening in order to support more than 2 million unemployed Americans as they get back on their feet. (See how your senator voted here.)

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Rating RATE Participants: Government's Largest Contractors in Corporate Tax Cut Coalition

Reforming America's Taxes Equitably, or RATE Coalition, is a corporate lobby group made up of 29 major corporations and two trade associations. Formed last year, the RATE Coalition has been increasingly active in pressing Congress to cut corporate income tax rates from current levels. But a number of the companies involved in the coalition benefit from the very revenue stream they're seeking to shrink.

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Executive Order to Promote Pay Equality for Women

President Obama is expected to sign an executive order on Tuesday that would prevent federal contractors from retaliating against employees who exchange information about their salaries.

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NPP Analyzes “Competing Visions” for America

Earlier this week, National Priorities Project (NPP) released its annual analysis of the budget proposals put forward by the president, Rep. Paul Ryan (R-WI) and the House Budget Committee, and the Congressional Progressive Caucus.

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New Farm Bill Threatens Agricultural Sustainability

As global warming continues to threaten agricultural yields and food security, Congress is missing an opportunity to use agricultural subsidies as investments in improving sustainability. According to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, 2012 was the hottest year ever in the USA since record keeping began in 1895, surpassing the previous high by a full degree Fahrenheit.

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