President Obama ratcheted up the pressure on Republicans over expired jobless insurance in his weekend address, citing moral and economic reasons for extending the benefits.

Obama noted that economists that have said that letting the benefits expire would drag down the economy in the months to come, just days before the Senate considered a measure to extend the insurance for three months.

But in calling on Republicans to back an extension, the president stressed that the two parties had both backed these sorts of benefits in the past.

He also maintained that many of the more than one million people who lost their benefits late last month were unemployed through no fault of their own, and suggested Republicans would be “just plain cruel” if they didn’t back an extension.

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