1.3 million to lose jobless benefits by year's end - Spokane, North Idaho News & Weather KHQ.com

1.3 million to lose jobless benefits by year's end

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WASHINGTON. - Unemployment benefits are expected to run out by the end of the year for more than 1.3 million Americans unless Congress or individual states authorize another extension.

The National Employment Law Project says more than 402,000 Americans will exhaust their unemployment benefits by the end of this month. That figure will more than triple by the end of December.

The government does not track how many jobless Americans have exhausted both their standard and extended benefits, but experts say the figure is nearly 100,000 and rising.

Republicans call stimulus a 'failed' experiment

Republicans aren't agreeing with Vice President Joe Biden's assessment of how well the economic stimulus has worked.

Biden said Thursday that the stimulus effort "is in fact working" despite public skepticism and Republican criticism. He said it's "played a significant role in changing the trajectory of our economy."

He delivered the upbeat report card on the $787 billion rescue effort in a speech today to the Brookings Institution, some 200 days after the effort was launched.

Republican Party chief Michael Steele says the "Democrats' rhetoric" doesn't match what he calls "the reality of millions of Americans remining unemployed." He describes the stimulus as "an economic experiment that failed Americans."

Next week, Obama's Council of Economic Advisers will deliver an updated projection on the number of jobs created or saved because of the stimulus plan.

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