U.S. Sen. Dick Durbin (D-Ill.) is trying to drum up support to pass a federal budget.  While the budget needs only a simple majority to pass, it needs 60 votes in order to end formal debate and move towards a final vote.  Durbin estimates at least eight Republican senators will be needed to support the bill to clear that hurdle, because several Democrats are opposed to the deal because it doesn’t include an extension of unemployment benefits.
 
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“A significant number of people in Illinois will see their benefits cut off as of the first of the year,” Durbin said. “I think it should have been included, but unfortunately, we couldn’t get a bipartisan agreement for that.”
 
The budget proposal passed the House 332-94 last week.  The Senate vote is likely to be closer, as Republicans are still upset over recent rule changes made that weakened their ability to block presidential appointments.
 
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