Obama Fights for Stimulus on Multiple Fronts
By Ben Pershing
Another day, another round of calls from President Obama for bipartisan support of his economic stimulus plan. Now he's focused on attracting the support of Senate GOP moderates, while at the same time sharpening his rhetoric against the plan's critics and their "failed theories." This is the first true fight of his administration, on both the legislative and message fronts, and right now Obama is losing.
But for all the attention paid to Republican misgivings about the stimulus package, most of the key conflicts right now are on the Democratic side of the aisle. In the Senate, some Democrats have grown concerned with both the size of the measure and the process by which it was assembled. A group of Democratic centrist critics have joined with their Republican counterparts to try to craft a smaller package, though that bipartisan group does not appear close to a deal.
House Democrats, meanwhile, head to their retreat today with Caucus moderates increasingly vocal in their complaints that Nancy Pelosi shut them out of the stimulus debate and in general gives them little opportunity for input.
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