By Vicki Needham - 06/30/10 11:07 PM EDT
The House and Senate will vote Thursday on separate bills to extend unemployment benefits for more than 1 million Americans.
The House is expected to pass a nearly $34 billion stand-alone version of the bill to extend benefits through November for the long-term jobless, which is around 7 million people.
The Senate will vote to end a Republican filibuster on a two-pronged measure that includes the benefits extension and provides homebuyers with an extra three-months to close on a purchase that qualifies for a federal tax credit up to $8,000.
Through Wednesday, Senate Democrats were one vote short of the 60 votes needed to advance the bill. The vote is expected around 5:30 p.m. Thursday, after Sen. Robert Byrd (D-W.Va.) lies in repose for most of the day in the Senate chamber.
If the Senate passes its legislation, the House would probably follow suit before the July 4 recess begins, according to a senior Democratic aide. That vote would likely take place Friday unless the process can be expedited.