White House supports emergency passage of jobless benefits

Gibbs said Wednesday he wasn't aware of any additional efforts to find a way to pay for the measure but said he "would check" on the status.  

"There’s no doubt that this is an emergency situation because those that are losing their jobs are out of work for a far longer period of time than we’ve seen in quite some time," Gibbs told reporters Wednesday.

The June jobs report showed a slight dip in the jobless rate to 9.5 percent with 14.6 million Americans out of work. More than 9.2 million are collecting some form of unemployment insurance, including 4.9 million receiving federal extensions of aid. 

If Congress fails to act before the August recess, more than 3.2 million people, about 75 percent of those getting extended benefits, will lose them, according to Labor Department numbers. 

"This has been, and should be, treated as an emergency, as it makes economic sense to provide benefits to people that are, because of what happened in this economy two years ago, with the type of support that they need," Gibbs said. 

"They’re using that money and putting it back into the economy. It makes sense certainly for the workers, and it makes sense for your economy."