Wednesday, February 11, 2009

It's (Somewhat) Official

The House and Senate have reached a tentative agreement on a stimulus package worth $790 billion. From what I hear, it should head to a vote in the House tomorrow, and the Senate on Friday. Conferees came up with a package lower than both the House and Senate bills. Details on the plan are not completely avaiable, but from what I can understand, they have eliminated some tax credits from the Senate package, like a $15,000 housing credit and a credit on auto purchases. Apparently, they also restored funding to education programs that the Senate had previously cut, and restored much of the direct aid to states.

It seems like a good deal to me, considering that a lot of the spending that was trimmed out were Senate amendments from Republicans who had no interest in supporting the bill.

We will write much more on this tonight, but the reason I say it's somewhat official, is that Senators Snowe, Collins and Specter, the Republican "Fili-busters" if you will, were all at the press conference praising the agreement. With their votes, the Senate can overcome all procedural hurdles. I don't expect any Democrats to jet because of this compromise. The House should pass the bill relatively easily.

Pop the champagne corks!

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