Unemployment Benefits of Long-Term Unemployed Threatened

Lifeline to millions of Americans cut off as they try to figure out how to make ends meet.
3:00 | 12/28/13

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Transcript for Unemployment Benefits of Long-Term Unemployed Threatened
-- New Year's nightmare playing out for more than a million Americans who will now -- unemployment benefits cut off tonight. And there's no promise from congress to do anything about it how to they explain it here tonight ABC Susan -- only from Washington. It is a lifeline to millions of long term unemployed they're -- put a lot of people in the dire straits like Kathy the -- who's keeping food on the table and a roof over her head. With a 332. Dollar a week unemployment payment. To -- it disappears. I -- Just terribly overwhelmed the Scotty has not been able to find steady employment since the recession up -- the economy in 2008. And now she's one of one point three million Americans. Losing a safety net today because congress went home for the year without extending emergency benefits. Now benefits will expire after 26 weeks. Yet long term unemployment is at its highest level since World War II with over four million Americans out of work for 27 weeks or more we don't abandon each -- when times are tough. Democrats are pushing for a three month extension the program costs about 25 billion for the year. Republicans want Democrats to find cuts to pay for the program and said they would listen to ideas next year. Even though some still prefer limiting benefits to 26 weeks -- extend -- beyond that you do a disservice to these workers. What to do about long term unemployment proved so contentious for the parties that they left out of the recent bipartisan budget deal fearing it would scuttle the agreement. About the next time congress could take it up is January 7.

This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.

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