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Protesters urge lawmakers to pass unemployment plan

From left to right, Senate Democrats including Minority Leader David Schapira, D-Tempe, Kyrsten Sinema, D-Phoenix, Minority Whip Paula Aboud, D-Tucson, and Steve Gallardo, D-Phoenix, confer during a special session called to solve the unemployment benefits problem, in the senate chambers at the capitol, Friday, June 10, 2011, in Phoenix.  The 20 weeks of federally funded extended unemployment benefits end this week without legislative action to change a formula in Arizona authorizing the benefits. (AP Photo/Ross D. Franklin)

From left to right, Senate Democrats including Minority Leader David Schapira, D-Tempe, Kyrsten Sinema, D-Phoenix, Minority Whip Paula Aboud, D-Tucson, and Steve Gallardo, D-Phoenix, confer during a special session called to solve the unemployment benefits problem, in the senate chambers at the capitol, Friday, June 10, 2011, in Phoenix. The 20 weeks of federally funded extended unemployment benefits end this week without legislative action to change a formula in Arizona authorizing the benefits. (AP Photo/Ross D. Franklin)

About 40 people gathered outside the Arizona Legislature to urge lawmakers to keep 20 weeks of federally funded extended unemployment benefits flowing to thousands of Arizonans.

Lawmakers took no action on Gov. Jan Brewer’s proposal to keep the benefits when they first considered it Friday. They are set to reconvene mid-afternoon Monday.

Top Republican legislative leaders say there wasn’t enough support for the proposal without also taking action on long-term measures such as business tax cuts and regulatory changes to spur the economy.

Protester Carla Mannes says she has been unemployed for about 68 weeks after losing her funeral industry job and that she is approaching the threshold for receiving the extended benefits.

She’s frustrated those who argue that extending benefits would encourage people not to look for jobs.

Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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