New academic research released last week showing that extending unemployment benefits is a net economic drag could strengthen the conservative case against extending those benefits at the federal level.

Congress allowed benefits for the long-term unemployed to expire at the end of 2013 as part of a larger budget deal. Democrats have offered proposals to extend the benefits.

The latest legislation, a 10-month extension with budget offsets, was held up in the Senate on Thursday after Majority Leader Harry Reid (D., Nev.) blocked Republicans from offering amendments.

The liberal case for an extension of benefits for the long-term unemployed rests on the supposed simulative effect of greater disposable income for the unemployed.

The new study, conducted by economists at the University of Pennsylvania and the Federal Reserve Bank of New York, contends that any such stimulus is dwarfed by the economic damage done by extending jobless benefits.

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