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RALEIGH, NC (AP) — The leader of the North Carolina Senate says there’s no change in the political faceoff with Democratic Gov. Bev Perdue over extending unemployment benefits for the long-term jobless.

Republican Senate leader Phil Berger of Rockingham County said Tuesday there’s no movement on restoring the benefits nearly a month after they were cut off.

Berger says he hopes Perdue changes her mind after vetoing the General Assembly’s move to extend the benefits only if the governor accepts double-digit cuts before budget negotiations begin in earnest. Perdue called the linkage “extortion.”

Minority Democrats have been unable to force a vote on a measure that simply changes the formula that would allow the unemployed to keep receiving benefits from the federal government for up to 99 weeks.

(Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)


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