Portman Explains His Vote Against Extending Unemployment Insurance

In this photo taken Wednesday, Nov. 6, 2013, Sen. Rob Portman, R-Ohio, arrives at a Senate Finance Committee hearing on Capitol Hill in Washington. Sen. Portman, a Republican, voted in favor of a gay rights bill Thu... In this photo taken Wednesday, Nov. 6, 2013, Sen. Rob Portman, R-Ohio, arrives at a Senate Finance Committee hearing on Capitol Hill in Washington. Sen. Portman, a Republican, voted in favor of a gay rights bill Thursday, Nov. 7, 2013, outlawing workplace discrimination against gay, bisexual and transgender Americans. Portman, once an opponent of gay rights, has said that his views changed after one of his sons came out as gay earlier this year. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite) MORE LESS
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Sen. Rob Portman (R-OH) on Sunday explained his decision to vote against the Senate bill that would have extended longterm unemployment benefits — he was one of six Republicans who voted to debate the legislation.

“Unfortunately, Democrats did not work with us, wouldn’t negotiate with us on how to pay for it,” he said on NBC’s “Meet the Press.” “We also have record numbers of people long-term unemployed. And the Democratic answer to that is, ‘Let’s add more to the 26 weeks of unemployment insurance to emergency benefits, and let’s do nothing to reform the program. Let’s do nothing to give people the skills they need to access the jobs that are out there.'”

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