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Obama Hails Stimulus Bill's Passage by House

President Obama hailed the passage of the "American Recovery and Reinvestment Act" in the House tonight, issuing the following statement:

Last year, America lost 2.6 million jobs. On Monday alone, we learned that some of our biggest employers plan to cut another 55,000. This is a wakeup call to Washington that the American people need us to act and act immediately.

That is why I am grateful to the House of Representatives for moving the American Recovery and Reinvestment plan forward today. There are many numbers in this plan. It will double our capacity to generate renewable energy. It will lower the cost of health care by billions and improve its quality. It will modernize thousands of classrooms and send more kids to college. And it will put billions of dollars in immediate tax relief into the pockets of working families.

But out of all these numbers, there is one that matters most to me: this recovery plan will save or create more than three million new jobs over the next few years.

I can also promise that my administration will administer this recovery plan with a level of transparency and accountability never before seen in Washington. Once it is passed, every American will be able to go the website recovery.gov and see how and where their money is being spent.

The plan now moves to the Senate, and I hope that we can continue to strengthen this plan before it gets to my desk. But what we can't do is drag our feet or allow the same partisan differences to get in our way. We must move swiftly and boldly to put Americans back to work, and that is exactly what this plan begins to do.

By Web Politics Editor  |  January 28, 2009; 6:40 PM ET
Categories:  B_Blog , Economy , Primary Source  
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Comments

JakeD,

I'm trying really hard not to be one of those who say, "Who Cares! Steamroller the thing through and let 'em eat dirt."

There are flaws in this package. I hope there will be serious debate in the Senate.

The economy is now shedding 20,000 jobs a day and unemployment claims have hit a new record.

We need some of our most experienced and able statesmen to get to work with the President and come up with an answer besides, "NO!"

Our house is on fire. You can hide in the basement and hope for rescue or you can pick up a bucket and work with your neighbors to put the fire out.

Posted by: JohnQuimby | January 29, 2009 9:30 PM | Report abuse

Posted by: JakeD | January 29, 2009 8:35 PM | Report abuse

JohnQuimby:

Impressive, Mr. Quimby, and I want to respond to it all, but I am pressed for time. Currencies can fail. A trillion dollars is a much bigger deal for China than it is to us. As fast as they are growing, our economy eclipses theirs.

Let's say they buy an even trillion in debt from us and get 5% to make the numbers easy. If we repay it in ten years they get a 50% return (ignoring compounding). If the currency is worth half of what it was when the money was loaned, they get one and a half times what they loaned, but its values is actually less (3/4). How do they require us to lose money.

I get that they need a market to sell there textiles and plastic dog vomit, but we also have to be a viable market with a stable currency.

Regards to you too, Sir.

Chillbear Latrigue, Clatrigue@live.com

Posted by: clatrigue | January 29, 2009 7:59 PM | Report abuse

clatrigue said:

"Let me ask you a serious question. We can print money, but someone has to absorb our debt to keep our currency viable. However, the more we make, the less valuable our money becomes as inflation increases. Why would China continue to buy our debt if they know that they will be paid back with inflated dollars?"

All of us who care about what happens next have a lot to talk about. Thanks for asking.

Someone observed that we don't just have a credit problem, we have a wage problem. Government continued to spend more and more as real wages and therefore taxable incomes declined over 20 years.

Tax cuts on upper income earners only made things worse. With no incentive to re-invest in their businesses, most independent business owners like me took their money out and gave it to Consumer Credit Banks and Wall Street. Where is that money now?

Why would China buy our debt?
Why wouldn't they?
Without us, China is out of business.

I think that we as individuals and as a country are going to have to absorb our own debt for a while. Revving up wages will return money to the treasury much faster than doing nothing and it should provide for the sustained growth that will eventually pay back the money we're borrowing from ourselves.

At the moment our twin perils are Depression/Deflation on one hand and Hyper Inflation on the other. It's going to take real skill to negotiate in between. That's why this is an "all hands on deck" moment.

There's obviously more than one take on this. But for the sake of conversation, that is my opinion.

Regards,

Posted by: JohnQuimby | January 29, 2009 6:59 PM | Report abuse

JakeD cried: "Hallow Victory: Obama vowed to change Washington and usher in a new post-partisan era...Problem was, he wanted only to listen and did not want to act on what Republicans said."
__________________

*yawn*

That is obviously not true. Obama DID make concessions to the Republicans on tax cuts (which unfortunately don't do anything to stimulate the economy in a recession) and took out some admittedly porky ideas.

He could not have done more to reach across the aisle and listen to Republicans. This may have been a mistake because he assumed Republicans still worked for the American people and not for right-wing extremist and anti-American traitor Rush Limbaugh, the new fat face of the Republican party.

I hope Obama learned his lesson. He should ONLY reach across the aisle if the Republicans unclench their fists and start working for the American people in the spirit Obama offered.

We won't hold our breath.

Anyway, a victory is a victory. He won.

Posted by: sequoiaqueneaux | January 29, 2009 5:22 PM | Report abuse


Obama is on a roll!

He has already accomplished more in 10 days than Bush did in 8 years!

Unless you count creating the new Great Depression, quadrupling terrorism worldwide, making the US a mass human-rights abusing rogue state and generally humiliating is as accomplishments. I sure don't.

Posted by: sequoiaqueneaux | January 29, 2009 5:14 PM | Report abuse

AS THEY SAY "THERE ARE NO ATHEISTS IN FOX HOLES"..... MIGHT I SUGGEST MANY ON THIS FORUM ARE NOT HELD UP IN SAID BUNKER!

BAIL OUT WALL STREET, THE BANKS, HAVE THE REST OF THE WORLD OWN MUCH OF THE USA AND BY ALL MEANS FORGET ABOUT ALL THOSE FOLK LOSING JOBS, HOUSES AND HAVING NO CHANCE OF DECENT HEALTH OR EDUCATION....YEAH, TALK UP BIG WE ARE USED TO YOU LOT THAT ARE DOING O.K. TELLING US TO "SUCK IT IN" FOR THE COUNTRY. YOUR WAY HASN'T WORKED, DO YOUR BLAMING ON YOUR GOP MASTERS.....CAUSE OBAMA IS GOING TO DO IT HIS WAY!

Posted by: porpie9254 | January 29, 2009 5:06 PM | Report abuse

JohnQuimby:

"Yeah, now they are. Where was the GOP leadership on big government, deficit spending and government oversight before?

When did President Bush submit a balanced budget?

As I said, I don't like paying a trillion dollars to get my country out of the pawn shop. But I give no credit to the party leaders that put us into hawk."

You are right. The Republican Congress and President never submitted a balanced budget. They were voted out in favor of Barrack Obama and change. In this respect, the United States requires a lot. However, what President Obama is proposing is to out-Bush Bush by amping up the spending. I didn't care for it when Bush blew our budget away annually and I don't like it any better now.

Let me ask you a serious question. We can print money, but someone has to absorb our debt to keep our currency viable. However, the more we make, the less valuable our money becomes as inflation increases. Why would China continue to buy our debt if they know that they will be paid back with inflated dollars?

I didn't vote for Barrack Obama, but I may in four years if he proves himself. However, almost no one will if their real earnings are half of what they are currently because their wages have been eaten up by inflation.

What good is having a minimum wage, if you kick out the legs from it via inflation?

Posted by: clatrigue | January 29, 2009 4:09 PM | Report abuse

Hollow Victory

... Without a single Republican voting for the bill, his high-profile visit to Capitol Hill on Tuesday came to exactly naught - at least on the House side.

Obama vowed to change Washington and usher in a new post-partisan era. The the mood music and optics were pitch perfect as he trekked up to the Hill. Republicans praised his gesture, welcomed his sincere demeanour and appreciated his willingness to listen.

Problem was, he wanted only to listen and did not want to act on what Republicans said. When he was asked if he would re-structure the package to include more tax cuts, he reportedly responded: "Feel free to whack me over the head because I probably will not compromise on that part."

He apparently added: " I understand that and I will watch you on Fox News and feel bad about myself."

That's fine. No doubt Obama will indeed get beaten up on Fox News. But his failure to get even the squishiest moderate Republican - including the 11 entertained in the White House by Rahm Emanuel last night - to back him is not merely a big score for Rep Eric Cantor, Republican Whip, and the rest of the GOP leadership.

It also shows that it is not just Fox, the loony Right or Rush Limbaugh - or however else you might want to characterise the opposition in order to marginalise it - who had grave misgivings about the content of the bill.

The Democratic leadership on Capitol Hill badly miscalculated by treating the bill as a victor's charter. Not that it seemed to bother Nancy Pelosi, Speaker of the House, who grinned from ear to ear as she announced the result of the vote.

Obama said yesterday he did not feel he had ownership of the bill. Be that as it may, if it goes through the Senate in similar fashion and is signed into law then - the efforts of Pelosio and Senator Harry Reid notwithstanding - it will be his and his alone.

http://blogs.telegraph.co.uk/toby_harnden/blog/2009/01/29/hollow_victory_republicans_deliver_slap_in_the_face_to_barack_obama

Posted by: JakeD | January 29, 2009 1:28 PM | Report abuse

A 40-Year Wish List

"Never let a serious crisis go to waste. What I mean by that is it's an opportunity to do things you couldn't do before."

So said White House Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel in November, and Democrats in Congress are certainly taking his advice to heart. The 647-page, $825 billion House legislation is being sold as an economic "stimulus," but now that Democrats have finally released the details we understand Rahm's point much better. This is a political wonder that manages to spend money on just about every pent-up Democratic proposal of the last 40 years.

We've looked it over, and even we can't quite believe it. There's $1 billion for Amtrak, the federal railroad that hasn't turned a profit in 40 years; $2 billion for child-care subsidies; $50 million for that great engine of job creation, the National Endowment for the Arts ...

http://online.wsj.com/article/SB123310466514522309.html

Posted by: JakeD | January 29, 2009 12:32 PM | Report abuse

clatrigue:

"The Democrats seem to be saying that they think it is more important to do something about the current economic crisis than to worry about future consequences. The Republicans are saying the opposite."

Yeah, now they are. Where was the GOP leadership on big government, deficit spending and government oversight before?

When did President Bush submit a balanced budget?

As I said, I don't like paying a trillion dollars to get my country out of the pawn shop. But I give no credit to the party leaders that put us into hawk.

Posted by: JohnQuimby | January 29, 2009 11:55 AM | Report abuse

Hopefully people will get over the Obama phase and pay attention to what is going on.

The stimulus pkg as it stands now does little to help the American people and get the economy going in the right direction.

Same ole politics back there cuz they added a bunch of pork for themselves and also each of the congressman and senators tacked one on for themselves to the tune of 90,000 each disguising it as something to do with fliers.

Yep, I don't know about you guys but they are on a different planet then the regular american citizen. None of what is in that stimulus bill will immediately help the economy and if it passes the way it is I guess we get what we deserve for not paying close enough attention and doing our homework.

Where the hell is the 700 billion they told us they needed or the sky would fall in. All of this money belongs to "we the people" and we, no our kids, grandkids and great grandkids will have to pay this debt and I personally don't want that.

We should always leave this country a little bit better for our kids, not strap them with a bunch of debt.

I believe we should have term limits on the house and the senate. These are the only offices that you can be there forever.
What you are seeing is just a little bit of "the good ole boys" club. The longer they are there the more powerful they become and eventually forget even why they are there. There are many bright young people that should and do go to Washington with great ideas but are shot down by the powers that be and those powers need to be replaced.

Posted by: sminni1943 | January 29, 2009 11:07 AM | Report abuse

clatrigue:

Don't hold your breath for a rational debate with JRM. That one won't even answer simple hypothetical questions. You are on the right track, however with all the pork in this bill and what taking out another huge loan will do to our economy. Keep up the good fight.

Posted by: JakeD | January 29, 2009 9:55 AM | Report abuse

JRM2 said: "Yes, thank you for stating the OBVIOUS. The problem is you see that America's economy is in tatters and our infrastructure is even worse off and it's not going to fix itself, by itself.

But I suppose you are in favor of rebuilding Iraq's infrastructure because they only have a hundred billion or so surplus."

I don't agree that the economy will not eventually fix itself. Having a strong currency brings with it it's own set of merits. However, either of these two packages that the government has passed and will pass equates to the entire spending in Iraq over six years. You also have to keep in mind that we are still in Iraq for the time being, so we are still spending money there and adding trillions in debt to our balance sheet. Not everything in bad in this country stems from the Iraq war. My grandfather got in a car crash the other day. It had nothing to do with the fact that we invaded Iraq. The less than $100 billion per year that we spend in Iraq did not cause this economic meltdown. People always lose credibility with me when they try to conflate an issue to include their own political agenda. My grandfather didn't really get in a crash, by the way. I don't have living grandparents. I used it to make a point.

I like the debate, JRM. Let's keep it going.

Clatrigue@live.com

Posted by: clatrigue | January 29, 2009 8:38 AM | Report abuse

Wow, I had to check my pulse and blood pressure. I found I agreed with JakeD on something.

I know the President, any President, wants their initial legislative victory. I did see a change in the manner in which politics is approached when the President went to Capitol Hill to meet with the Republican leadership. That in and of itself is a remarkable change, albeit mostly on style.

That the Congress and Executive need to make real progress on our economic problems is not in question. I intially became angry at the Republican caucus for their opposition to this bill.

Then I started hearing about the existence of what could be called fluff/pork, pick your own adjective. I think somebody has to ask questions, somebody should really read and analyze this. If this bill isn't the correct vehicle then revision is in order.

A loyal opposition is a very necessary thing in politics, lest the majority start believeing their own hype.

The change I voted for was a break from the past. That means the standard practices of both parties need to evolve.

Has anyone stopped to consider what the interest payments will be on a loan of that size.

Posted by: Thatsnuts | January 29, 2009 7:36 AM | Report abuse

Whey mah checks be?? Odumbo done promised me mah checks!!!!

Posted by: tjhall1 | January 29, 2009 3:37 AM | Report abuse

"Because less than $90 billion would actually stimulate the economy.

Posted by: JakeD | January 28, 2009 10:10 PM"
---
Boy, you are an economic genius JakeD. So tell me why Bush's 158 billion give-away didn't work but your 90b would?

Posted by: JRM2 | January 29, 2009 2:33 AM | Report abuse

"you have to realize that printing up trillions of dollars is not going to be good for the country in the long run."
----
Yes, thank you for stating the OBVIOUS. The problem is you see that America's economy is in tatters and our infrastructure is even worse off and it's not going to fix itself, by itself.

But I suppose you are in favor of rebuilding Iraq's infrastructure because they only have a hundred billion or so surplus.

But the party of Hoover seems to find a way to *uck the economy EVERYTIME they get their greedy, slimy hands on a bit of power.

Republicans are traitors.

Posted by: JRM2 | January 29, 2009 2:31 AM | Report abuse

So since the Republiturds have no interest in the bill that was revised for them then I guess Barack should just change it back to what he originally wanted and STEAM-ROLL THE REPUBLICANS.

They don't play nice anyway.

Posted by: JRM2 | January 29, 2009 2:27 AM | Report abuse

So Barack reaches out, waters down a bill for Repubs and doesn't even get one vote, *uck 'em Barack, take the gloves off, they took themselves out of it so screw 'em.

We spend 10 times what all the other developed countries combined spend on military. Bush's tax cuts account for approx. 49% of the deficit.

The repukes would rather spend money rebuilding Iraq than rebuilding America.

They have royally screwed this country, they are traitors.

I hope EVERY LAST ONE OF THEM gets booted in 2010.

Posted by: JRM2 | January 29, 2009 2:24 AM | Report abuse

I do not think that the Republican's attempted to block this bill over mere ideology. The government just voted to water down our currency to the tune of $700 billion a few months ago. Now we are going to print out another $800 billion. This is going to hurt us in the not so distant future when every dollar that we make is worth significantly less. The next thing to follow is inflation. This has very little to do with political affiliation. The Democrats seem to be saying that they think it is more important to do something about the current economic crisis than to worry about future consequences. The Republicans are saying the opposite. Regardless of how you come down on this bill, you have to realize that printing up trillions of dollars is not going to be good for the country in the long run.

Clatrigue@live.com

Posted by: clatrigue

------------------------

If they cut spending on Government lackeys it might not hurt as much. These Do-Nothing politicians have to go. Then there's Military spending that can be cut also. We already have enough Bombs to blow up the world ten times over and they keep buying more. Companies that make Military equipment in the US needs to be Idled down. And buying Military equipment that's made in other countries needs to be cut all together. I hope Obama makes good on his promise of going through spending line for line. The Good ol Boys on the payroll days are over.

Posted by: HemiHead66 | January 29, 2009 12:11 AM | Report abuse

The expectation that House Republicans would act in the nation's best interest is a shaky one at best (there will be better luck in the Senate.) And politically, as long as the face of Republicanism is Eric Cantor and Rush Limbaugh, they are going to take a pounding at the polls (both opinion polls and the kind that count votes.) This is not going to help the Republican party avoid marginalization, though it should play well on talk radio. But I suspect that it will take an election cycle or two for both the core Republican base and the media to get these kinds of numbers to sink in:
.
http://www.diageohotlinepoll.com/
.

Posted by: DrainYou | January 28, 2009 11:19 PM | Report abuse

Thank you, clatrigue.

Posted by: JakeD | January 28, 2009 10:46 PM | Report abuse

I do not think that the Republican's attempted to block this bill over mere ideology. The government just voted to water down our currency to the tune of $700 billion a few months ago. Now we are going to print out another $800 billion. This is going to hurt us in the not so distant future when every dollar that we make is worth significantly less. The next thing to follow is inflation. This has very little to do with political affiliation. The Democrats seem to be saying that they think it is more important to do something about the current economic crisis than to worry about future consequences. The Republicans are saying the opposite. Regardless of how you come down on this bill, you have to realize that printing up trillions of dollars is not going to be good for the country in the long run.

Clatrigue@live.com

Posted by: clatrigue | January 28, 2009 10:38 PM | Report abuse

HemiHead:

Because less than $90 billion would actually stimulate the economy.

Posted by: JakeD | January 28, 2009 10:10 PM | Report abuse

The Repubs have made their bed by choosing ideology over country by agreeing among themselves not to cast a SINGLE vote for the Obama plan.They better like how it feels when they go home and tell their voters they voted against relief.THEY HAD THEIR CHANCE.

Posted by: RPLCO | January 28, 2009 10:08 PM | Report abuse

They took the right bill of $700B and slapped Christ again. Maybe that's the same "bill" in an additional form. The game is over. It's time to take care of business. Thank you sir.

Posted by: eadsjames | January 28, 2009 10:03 PM | Report abuse

I see that the majority of congressmen from South Carolina, Georgia, Florida, Alabama, Louisiana and Texas voted against the stimulus bill. Congress should ensure that none of the stimulus money goes to those states since they oppose spending government money to stimulate the economy.

Posted by: cdierd1944 |

==================

South Carolina is my state. Did they say why they voted against it? I owe two years in back tax on my property and they're voting against relief. How dare they. Think I'll make some phone calls.

Posted by: HemiHead66 | January 28, 2009 9:49 PM | Report abuse

Why is Mr. Obama wasting my tax dollars wining and dining republicans. The very fact that Republicans exist is a major reason I have trouble believing there is a god. Va. congressman Eric Cantor is being groomed to be one of their future leaders. Cantor must have been born a Republican, because his face has a permanent sneer on it. His mouth is shaped like he just finished smoking a turd. I'd rather support PETA than PETR.

Posted by: msmart2 | January 28, 2009 9:36 PM | Report abuse

I see that the majority of congressmen from South Carolina, Georgia, Florida, Alabama, Louisiana and Texas voted against the stimulus bill. Congress should ensure that none of the stimulus money goes to those states since they oppose spending government money to stimulate the economy.

Posted by: cdierd1944 | January 28, 2009 9:29 PM | Report abuse

Given the impact of the Republican economic plan over the past 8 years, Obama should be on his knees giving thanks that the Repubs don't support his plan. There is HOPE for the future.

Posted by: cdierd1944 | January 28, 2009 9:23 PM | Report abuse

Following this lead, the Washington Post could save itself a lot of money on staff salaries by just reprinting White House press releases.

Posted by: brewstercounty | January 28, 2009 9:01 PM | Report abuse

Sure Jake, I'll have a civil conversation with ya. Let me start by saying that I think it's time we trimmed the Republican fat in Washington. If American workers can be outsourced so can Government officials. We'll take their jobs,then offer them Tax relief in it's place. It's a great deal. Married with 2 kids making 30K a year will get cha a whole $1,190 dollars. And Married with 2 kids making 100K a year will get cha $2,700. Things are always better at the top Ha? But wait a minute. If ya don't have a Job, you don't get a Tax break. Now we're back to Zero.. Without Jobs, Tax breaks aren't worth spit. We need both.

Posted by: HemiHead66 | January 28, 2009 8:59 PM | Report abuse

Now if the economy at the end of this year begins to show some signs of revival you can be sure that the Republicans and conservatives will say that this crisis was over hyped and was just part of the normal business cycle. But if it continues on its present course they will jump all over Obama and how the stimulus "failed".

I'm a big supporter of President Obama but if there's one thing I fault him with it would be his naiveté in believing that the Republicans might join him in a spirit of bipartisanship to help our country in one of its worst moments ever. They are back to the games they played in trying to destroy Bill Clinton starting in 1993. Don't expect anything else or you are deluding yourself.

Posted by: dldbug | January 28, 2009 8:56 PM | Report abuse

Hoooo boy.

I'm out. Have fun JakeD.

Posted by: JohnQuimby | January 28, 2009 8:53 PM | Report abuse

Glad to see that the Nay vote was more bipartisan than the Yea vote. Something to build on to stop this Idiocracy.

Posted by: georgejones5 | January 28, 2009 8:51 PM | Report abuse

JakeD - If he is not your President and not a Natural Born Citizen, then every Presidential Order, Appointment or bill he signs is illegitimate and without the force of law?

Posted by: macneilb | January 28, 2009 8:44 PM | Report abuse

How wonderful that the market went up 200 points on news that the SP would pass - over the objections of Republicans who stood firm and shot down any reason to ever give them credit for helping anyone but themselves.


Posted by: JohnQuimby | January 28, 2009 8:40 PM | Report abuse

JakeD - Dred Scott was effectively overturned when the 13th and 14th Amendments were ratified.

Posted by: macneilb | January 28, 2009 8:39 PM | Report abuse

Since before Reagan, this is the first government spending bill aimed directly and comprehensively at the strengthening capacity of the middle-class to earn and spend - the 100 year foundation of American growth.

While the bill is far from perfect and completely inadequate, it was only possible during a world economic recession, 25 year highs in unemployment and 10 trillion dollar debt coming at the end of decades of corporate tax welfare and record profits.

Once a bad idea, like trickle down economics gets planted in the psyche of a nation, it takes a series of multi-year disasters to turn the ship. The ship is finally turning.

I would like to see many changes in this bill - and they will come - but the basic focus on creating direct middle-class economic strength will NOT.

Posted by: YoungAtheart | January 28, 2009 8:30 PM | Report abuse

JakeD, if we didn't have you here with us, we'd have to invent you. Always an eloquent speaker for the wrong side of history!

(Who knows, maybe we did invent you. Maybe you're Rahm Emmanuel in drag, firing up the left -- or more accurately the non-far-right -- with reverse psychology!)

Posted by: wkorn | January 28, 2009 8:21 PM | Report abuse

Looks like you're in the minority again JakeD, just like your Repuglican heroes.

I hear Sarah the Bluder Woman is hiring, why don't you ring her up?

Posted by: DrainYou | January 28, 2009 8:18 PM | Report abuse

Anyone else?

Posted by: JakeD | January 28, 2009 8:15 PM | Report abuse

JakeD, it was you and the rest of the angry old rich white guy Republicans who spent the last eight years driving our economy off a cliff in the first place.
You earned your minority status so quit acting like a petulant child...find a hobby or something.


Isn't it past your bed time now anyway?

Posted by: DrainYou | January 28, 2009 8:13 PM | Report abuse

Less than one-half hour ago:

"JakeD:
Do you work at WaPo or something? You're on here crying and spitting out already debunked wingnut talking points 24/7. Don't you have a freaking job?"

Posted by: DrainYou | January 28, 2009 7:44 PM

If anyone wants to have a civil discussion, without the ad hominem personal attacks, about the pros and cons of this proposed legislation, please let me know.

Posted by: JakeD | January 28, 2009 8:12 PM | Report abuse

DrainYou:

So, you knew I didn't have a "freaking" job in the first place?

Posted by: JakeD | January 28, 2009 8:10 PM | Report abuse

JakeD, a rich angry old retired lawyer...and the voive of the blue collar voters?


HAHAHA!!!

Posted by: DrainYou | January 28, 2009 8:08 PM | Report abuse

macneilb:

There will be enough debate (filibuster if needed) to educate the American people on the "Stimulus" Bill. He's not MY President. BTW no court ever overturned Dred Scott either.

Posted by: JakeD | January 28, 2009 8:06 PM | Report abuse

The expectation that House Republicans would act in the nation's best interest was a shaky one at best (there will be better luck in the Senate.) And politically, as long as the face of Republicanism is Eric Cantor and Rush Limbaugh, they are going to take a pounding at the polls (both opinion polls and the kind that count votes.) This is not going to help the Republican party avoid marginalization, though it should play well on talk radio. But I suspect that it will take an election cycle or two for both the core Republican base and the media to get these kinds of horrible Reublican appoval rating numbers to sink in:
.
http://www.diageohotlinepoll.com/
.

Posted by: DrainYou | January 28, 2009 8:06 PM | Report abuse

Hollow Victory

... Without a single Republican voting for the bill, his high-profile visit to Capitol Hill on Tuesday came to exactly naught - at least on the House side.

Obama vowed to change Washington and usher in a new post-partisan era. The the mood music and optics were pitch perfect as he trekked up to the Hill. Republicans praised his gesture, welcomed his sincere demeanour and appreciated his willingness to listen.

Problem was, he wanted only to listen and did not want to act on what Republicans said. When he was asked if he would re-structure the package to include more tax cuts, he reportedly responded: "Feel free to whack me over the head because I probably will not compromise on that part."

He apparently added: " I understand that and I will watch you on Fox News and feel bad about myself."

That's fine. No doubt Obama will indeed get beaten up on Fox News. But his failure to get even the squishiest moderate Republican - including the 11 entertained in the White House by Rahm Emanuel last night - to back him is not merely a big score for Rep Eric Cantor, Republican Whip, and the rest of the GOP leadership.

It also shows that it is not just Fox, the loony Right or Rush Limbaugh - or however else you might want to characterise the opposition in order to marginalise it - who had grave misgivings about the content of the bill.

The Democratic leadership on Capitol Hill badly miscalculated by treating the bill as a victor's charter. Not that it seemed to bother Nancy Pelosi, Speaker of the House, who grinned from ear to ear as she announced the result of the vote.

Obama said yesterday he did not feel he had ownership of the bill. Be that as it may, if it goes through the Senate in similar fashion and is signed into law then - the efforts of Pelosio and Senator Harry Reid notwithstanding - it will be his and his alone.

http://blogs.telegraph.co.uk/toby_harnden/blog/2009/01/29/hollow_victory_republicans_deliver_slap_in_the_face_to_barack_obama

Posted by: JakeD | January 28, 2009 8:04 PM | Report abuse

JakeD - Why don't the Republicans filibuster the bill in the Senate? They have the 41 votes. In the meantime, no court has ordered the President to produce his birth certificate.

Posted by: macneilb | January 28, 2009 8:01 PM | Report abuse

A 40-Year Wish List

"Never let a serious crisis go to waste. What I mean by that is it's an opportunity to do things you couldn't do before."

So said White House Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel in November, and Democrats in Congress are certainly taking his advice to heart. The 647-page, $825 billion House legislation is being sold as an economic "stimulus," but now that Democrats have finally released the details we understand Rahm's point much better. This is a political wonder that manages to spend money on just about every pent-up Democratic proposal of the last 40 years.

We've looked it over, and even we can't quite believe it. There's $1 billion for Amtrak, the federal railroad that hasn't turned a profit in 40 years; $2 billion for child-care subsidies; $50 million for that great engine of job creation, the National Endowment for the Arts ...

http://online.wsj.com/article/SB123310466514522309.html

Posted by: JakeD | January 28, 2009 7:56 PM | Report abuse

First of all, The Rep do not tax cut just the rich. They give "ALL" Americans tax cuts. Of course, the more you make and pay in the more you will get back. Duh?

I guess the lawn on the mall will look nice. Hopefully they agreed to take quite a few things out of this "stimulus" package...like the $1 Million water park in FL. Well sure it will create jobs to construct but if majority of US is layed off then who in the hell could afford to go to a water park..

I just hope they stick to the things that will actually stimulate the economy. I hope this all works out..

Posted by: myra_lejano | January 28, 2009 7:49 PM | Report abuse

"JOB CREATION"?! $650,000,000 for MORE digital TV converter box coupons? $350,000,000 for STD prevention and education programs?

Posted by: JakeD | January 28, 2009 7:48 PM | Report abuse

There could be no better investent than to invest in America becoming energy independent. We need to utilize everything in out power to reduce our dependence on foreign oil including using our own natural resources.OPEC will continue to cut production until they achieve their desired 80-100. per barrel. The high cost of fuel this past year seriously damaged our economy and society. Oil is finite. We are using oil globally at the rate of 2X faster than new oil is being discovered. We need to take some of these billions in bail out bucks and bail ourselves out of our dependence on foreign oil. Jeff Wilson has a really good new book out called The Manhattan Project of 2009 Energy Independence Now. He explores our uses of oil besides gasoline, our depletion, out reserves and stores as well as viable options to replace oil.Oil is finite, it will run out in the not too distant future. WE need to take some of these billions in bail out bucks and bail America out of it's dependence on foreign oil. The historic high price of gas this past year did serious damage to our economy and society.If all gasoline cars, trucks, and SUV's instead had plug-in electric drive trains, the amount of electricity needed to replace gasoline is about equal to the estimated wind energy potential of the state of North Dakota. WE should never allow others to have that much power over our economy again. Every member of congress needs to read this book. http://www.themanhattanprojectof2009.com

Posted by: BeyondGreen | January 28, 2009 7:47 PM | Report abuse

I am retired (and I never worked at the WaPo, thank God).

Posted by: JakeD | January 28, 2009 7:46 PM | Report abuse

The House Republican membership is so small that it now basically consists of far right-wing lunatic fringers anyway. Let them go back to their home districts and tell their jobless constituents that they voted against a job creating stimulas bill because of ideological objections...it should be hilarious to watch.


Prez Obama made it pretty clear in his press conference yesterday that he's going to get his bill through, with or without any GOP House votes. He'll need at least 2-3 GOP Senate votes to block a filibuster, but I suspect he already has those in his pocket. So basically what he's saying is: "You can be a part of the process. If you're willing to offer constructive ideas, I'm willing to listen. But if you're just going to obstruct, you're going to get steamrolled."


Mission Accomplished!

Posted by: DrainYou | January 28, 2009 7:46 PM | Report abuse

JakeD:
Do you work at WaPo or something? You're on here crying and spitting out already debunked wingnut talking points 24/7. Don't you have a freaking job?

Posted by: DrainYou | January 28, 2009 7:44 PM | Report abuse

It's unlikely that every single Republican would have voted against this bill without marching orders from the leadership. There are some moderate Republicans in the House, although their names escape me.

But this is not a problem. I'm sure President Obama and his minions are smart enough to bring it to the attention of the American people, every day, who is on their side and who isn't. And they'll do it in the kindest and most inclusive way possible.

Good luck with being obstructionist, Republican congresscritters. I would have thought you had enough brains to see that a hard-line position like that became untenable on January 20th. We'll see if there are any of you left in Congress after 2010.

Posted by: wkorn | January 28, 2009 7:34 PM | Report abuse

Change is hard, isn't it? We all knew the house Republicans wouldn't help with this. The GOP is the party of the rich. They are the ones who, over the last eight years, set up a situation (including the Bush tax cuts for the rich) where rich CEOs got billions in bonuses and others like Madoff and his ilk ponzied while ordinary people lost jobs, homes, health care and retirement. We've lost 100,000 jobs in the last three days. Meanwhile it was announced today that AIG which has taken $125 billion in bailouts gave large bonuses to executives.

The rich CEOs and their Republican friends are still acting the same as always. They don't understand that things have changed. We are no longer going to have a nation where the rich rob the poor, put huge amounts of money in their own pockets while destroying the middle class. Things have changed. And if the GOP can't go along, we need to vote even more of them out.

Posted by: tinyjab40 | January 28, 2009 7:23 PM | Report abuse

Bravo, Obama. He has guts.

This is the only way to get the economy going and put money in ordinary people's pockets, so they can start buying what they need and keep manufacturing going - and at the same time, get a lot of things done that need to be done.

Your money will be used for the common good - instead of ending up in some wealthy guys' bank accounts abroad. Anything wrong with that?

Posted by: asoders22 | January 28, 2009 7:14 PM | Report abuse

I know that Rep. Boyd and Taylor voted NO. Good for them.

Posted by: JakeD | January 28, 2009 6:55 PM | Report abuse

11 brave Democrats joined all 177 Republican Representatives in voting NO.

Posted by: JakeD | January 28, 2009 6:53 PM | Report abuse

Hopefully, enough GOP Senators can educate America on what's wrong with this "Stimulus" Bill.

Posted by: JakeD | January 28, 2009 6:45 PM | Report abuse

And the era of GP obstructionism begins. Don't they know who won the election?

http://www.political-buzz.com/

Posted by: parkerfl1 | January 28, 2009 6:43 PM | Report abuse

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