Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid says he is cautiously optimistic that a compromise is close on legislation to renew jobless benefits for the long-term unemployed. The Nevada Democrat made his comments at a news conference, although he gave no details. Is there support for the extension in the House?  Fourth District Republican Congressman Doc Hastings, "I think there is certainly sympathy in the house to do that, if it is paid for, offset by a cuts in other areas."

The Senate has been working on a three-month extension of  a program that expired on Dec. 28, immediately cutting off  benefits of roughly $256 weekly for more than one million

Hastings says one way congress can help the jobless is to help businesses create jobs. "One hindrance to job creation is Obmacare, right now we are in a situation where America is getting the full effects now of Obamacare. That's adding potentially huge cost to individuals. I'm sure that businesses will start getting renewals for next year as to how much it will cost them. That is not helping the job market."
Hastings also urges the Senate to pass a number of energy bills passed in the house that would help create jobs.