In it, but not of it. TPM DC

Jobless Insurance Talks Break Down As Key Republican Bolts

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AP Photo / J. Scott Applewhite

An exasperated Reid, who used a tactic to prevent the minority from offering amendments to the bill, complained that Republicans were using the occasion to push bad-faith amendments to damage Obamacare.

"Nothing is ever quite good enough," said Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV).

Portman also said Reid scaled back the offset he pushed to prevent people from wrongly obtaining both unemployment benefits and Social Security Disability Insurance at once. "There is an important difference between what was just offered in the new Democrat proposal and what is in my proposal," he said, arguing that Reid modified his proposed offset without telling him.

Meanwhile, senior Democratic aides accused Portman of trying to find an excuse to scuttle the agreement.

"They're finding a way to bail out," said one aide.

"They seem to be unable to take yes for an answer," said a second aide.

It's not clear what happens next but Sen. Chuck Schumer (D-NY) said he hopes the discussions will "be put back together over the weekend."

"I don't think it's irreparable at this point," he told reporters. "I think it's in much worse shape than it was three hours ago."

This article has been updated.