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Unemployment benefits running out

In several states and no seems inclined to help. Austerity!

Robin St. Louis of Charlotte, N.C. lost her job as a sales rep just before Christmas in 2009 and said she hasn’t had much luck with her job search since then.

“Looking for a job, it seems your résumé goes into a black hole,” St. Louis, 46, told HuffPost, describing the process of flinging one job application after another at unresponsive potential employers and staffing agencies.

St. Louis said her family is grateful for the $325 she’s received every week in unemployment insurance since her layoff: “This money’s sustaining us.”

But now the sustenance has been cut off. The federal Extended Benefits program, which provides up to 20 weeks of benefits for long-term unemployed who burn through both state benefits and federal Emergency Unemployment Compensation, expired this month in North Carolina, Tennessee and Wisconsin.

The deadline for payouts passed on April 16. The North Carolina General Assembly approved a bill that would preserve the benefits, but Gov. Bev Perdue (D) vetoed it Saturday because Republicans paired the measure with deep budget cuts. St. Louis is one of 37,000 long-term unemployed North Carolinians have been left hanging.

The next states where the program will expire are Alaska, Alabama and Kansas, according to Mike Evangelist of the National Employment Law Project. Analyzing state unemployment data released Tuesday by the U.S. Department of Labor, Evangelist predicts EB payments will stop in those states on May 14 unless local lawmakers take action. Payments will stop in June in Arizona, Pennsylvania, Washington, D.C. and New Jersey (though legislation to prevent the cutoff there is on the governor’s desk).

No new nukes

In Texas.

I don’t know what to do

Pete Yorn and Scarlett Johanssen:

If she knew what she wants

One of my best friends likes to sing this to me when she wants to tease me about my (very) occasional problems with decision-making. The Bangles covering Jules Shear:

Virtually Speaking Susie

Tonight’s guests: John Amato and Dave Neiwart of Crooks and Liars, talking about their book “Over the Cliff: How Obama’s Election Drove the American Right Insane.” (Also, because it’s hockey season, expect Amato to break into his take on the Stanley Cup playoffs.)

Click here to listen. Call 646-200-3440 with questions or comments!

Is sugar toxic?

Yes.

Success

I am applauding myself because for once in my life, I got off at an expressway exit just before traffic turned into a virtual parking lot. (I spent the afternoon in the western suburbs, which is probably the single biggest traffic pain-in-the-ass around.)

Milky Way photographer

An interview with the man who took that amazing video I posted yesterday:

Visit msnbc.com for breaking news, world news, and news about the economy

Scott Horton

On corporations, and why the SCOTUS ruling on Citizens United wasn’t what James Madison had in mind.

Groupies

A lot of freshman congress critters are groupies. They’re so excited to be around famous people! People they saw on the teevee! And so fundraisers are an opportunity to hang out with celebrities while doing the odious task of raising campaign cash.

See how well that worked out?

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