The Washington Times - December 19, 2013, 09:06AM

Sen. John Thune said Thursday he expects Congress to come back from its holiday break on a mission to roll back cuts to military retirees, which were included in a budget deal that made it through the Senate on Wednesday.

“It needs to be fixed … that should have been caught before it got to the floor,” the South Dakota Republican told MSNBC’s “Morning Joe.”

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The deal shaved cost-of-living adjustments for military retirees, a provision that some GOP senators lambasted, while others said cuts were spread across the board and that the military cuts affected younger persons who often find new employment.

Mr. Thune said he expects “an attempt to make that right” when Congress returns to Washington.

He also anticipates a “fairly spirited debate” over the extension of unemployment insurance benefits, which Democrats were unable to get into the budget package despite their protests.

Mr. Thune said Republican lawmakers are more likely to fight for job-creation bills to rectify the problem around unemployment benefits.

He also said Congress’ next fight over whether to lift the nation’s debt limit may not hit until the spring, since the Treasury can use extraordinary measures to bypass the appointed deadline of Feb. 7.

Mr. Thune said Republicans will likely ask for some concessions from Democrats, and some of them may involve the health care law.

If lawmakers are going to raise the limit, he said, “we ought to do something about the debt.”