Senate filibuster ends over unemployment benefit extensions for Missourians

Several Republican senators ended their filibuster Thursday afternoon against a plan to extend unemployment benefits for Missourians from 79 to 99 weeks.

Sen. Jim Lembke, R-Lemay, and his supporters ended the filibuster after meeting with Senate President Pro Tem Rob Mayer, R-Dexter.

The two sides agreed upon a deal requiring the Senate Appropriations Committee to find $250 million in federal stimulus money to send back to the federal government.

The comprise also included an amendment to the bill, which lowers state unemployment benefits from a maximum of 26 to 20 weeks.

After ending the filibuster, Lembke called the agreement a great victory for Missouri taxpayers.

“I won, I won, my goal from the beginning was to send back as much stimulus money as possible, borrowed money from the federal government, and that’s what we accomplished today,” Lembke said.

The bill is scheduled to be heard in the fiscal oversight committee on Monday, it needs a final vote in the Senate before it moves on to the House.

– Missouri Digital News