As the U.S. Senate wrestles with a bill that would extend unemployment benefits while at the same time creating jobs, Senator Bond signs onto an alternative that spends less money.

Bond is co-sponsoring a bill he calls “the Thune Alternative,” saying the meat of the orginal idea of keeping jobless Americans afloat is still there, but without adding $80 billion to the already $13 trillion federal defecit.

Bond took to the Senate floor Wednesday to point out the similarities in his bill to the Democrats’ extenders bill that failed. Sen. McCaskill was among the Democrats who voted down the original bill.

The Democrats are expected to offer their own alternative. With it, they want $24 billion to help cash-strapped states meet their Medicaid payments next year, including Missouri.

The original bill sank on a 45-52 vote. The S$141 billion package of tax incentives and unemployment insurance benefits, among other items, would have added nearly $80 billion to the deficit, which, incidently, just reached $13 trillion.

Other Democrats who voted against the measure include Sens. Lieberman, (Conn.), .Landrieu, (La.), Bayh, (Ind.), Menendez, (N.J), Begich (Alaska), Feingold (Wis.), Kohl (Wis.), Landrieu (La.),  Nelson (Neb.), Nelson (Fla.), Pryor (Ark.), and Webb (Va.).

Bond told his colleagues on the Senate floor that the Democrats’ original bill would increase spending by $126 billion, included more than $70 billion in new and permanent taxes, would increases the deficit by nearly $80 billion over the next ten years.

“While including all the major priorities Republicans and Democrats have agreed upon, the Thune Substitute is paid for, cuts taxes, and cuts the deficit by $68 billion over ten years,” he says.

Bond has posted a video of his remarks on his Web site at — click on the “Multimedia” button).