Archive for the ‘stimulus bill’ Category

White House Budget Manager Orszag Wants Quick Spend

January 28, 2009

Peter Orszag, the director of the White House Office of Management and Budget, urged lawmakers Tuesday to pass a bill with the authorization to spend most of the $825 billion stimulus funds quickly. He wants 75 percent of the money spent in 11/2 years.

Listen to NPR’s report here.

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Obama’s Meeting With House Republicans Constructive -Video

January 27, 2009

Obama says he doesn’t expect 100% agreement, but he’s hoping politics can be set aside.

Republican response:

CQ Politics: House Republicans said that Obama defended the existing stimulus package but assured them there were would be room to incorporate some changes during negotiations between the House and Senate over a final version.

Several members said they still plan to vote against the House bill Wednesday but would take another look when a final version comes back to the House.

�Sometimes you have to vote no the first time around,� Rep. Jack Kingston , R-Ga., said. �The real test will be what happens a week from now.�

�The most encouraging statement the president made was that he had no pride of authorship� over the House bill, said Minority Whip Eric Cantor , R-Va. �I took that to mean that tomorrow�s vote is a first step.�

Rep. Henry E. Brown Jr. , R-S.C., described the meeting as having �a relaxed atmosphere. Everybody was jovial.� He added that from Obama�s remarks �it was pretty evident that he had a good handle on the content of the bill.�

Rep. Peter T. King , R-N.Y., said Obama drew laughter and cheers from the lawmakers when he agreed to extend the question and answer period from 25 minutes to 30 minutes, even though it would make him late to meet GOP senators.

King said Obama told them �The Senate can wait. You see I can pander with the best of you.�

House GOP Conference Chairman Mike Pence of Indiana said prior to the meeting that Democrats had drafted a purely partisan bill. He said Republican leaders would undertake a public campaign against it. �The American people need to know that President Obama�s call for compromise has been completely ignored.�

Obama open to more tax breaks for small businesses:

While Obama didn�t promise major changes to the package, GOP members said he showed flexibility on some issues.

�The president did say he has some concerns over the spending proposals he sees in this bill,� Boehner said.

Participants said Obama took about 10 questions. Peter J. Roskam, R-Ill., had one of the more charged exchanges with Obama, after complaining that House Democratic leaders had shut out GOP amendments and seemed to be taking a much less compromising approach than the negotiated bipartisan approach suggested by Obama.

�He said he would be open to hear about tax breaks for small business. I might get back to him,� Roskam said. Read more at CQ

What else did Obama say?

US NEWS: “Obama is speaking now. He is talking about how bad the economy is and that it is deteriorating rapidly.”

– “Mentioned Caterpillar and Microsoft having to layoff workers.”

– “The president said that the stimulus is ‘just one leg in multi leg stool to get economy going.’

– “He wants to deal with the housing market more aggressively.”

– “This is just the first step.”

– “Obama said the he would ‘like not to have to spend the stimulus money.'”

– “He also said that he has ‘no interest in increasing government just to increase the size of government.'”

– On taxes, “Obama says tax relief for some working families must come from payroll so even families who don’t pay income taxes get relief and they will spend it.”

– On GOP complaints, “he said that ‘there will be time to beat him up and a time for politics. He said I understand that and I will watch you on Fox News and feel bad about myself.'”

– “Obama said if we can do more small business tax relief, ‘we should do it, but I am just as concerned about the long term impact of tax cuts as I am about spending.'”

– “He also issued concern about the debt. ‘I will be judged by the legacy I have left behind. I don’t want to leave our children with a legacy of debt. I am inheriting an annual yearly debt of over $1 trillion.'”

Apparently, what Obama did today was rare:

PI: Obama’s trip to Capitol Hill was rare for a sitting president, especially given his decision to meet only with the opposition. He met with Democratic lawmakers earlier this month.
In his comments, Obama said he is “absolutely confident” that the country can find ways to solve the country’s economic woes. But he said “the key right now is to make sure that we keep politics to a minimum.”

McCain Can’t Decide Who To Be

January 27, 2009

McCain voted against confirming Timothy Geithner after saying he would. Read about that here.
Geithner was easily confirmed.
John McCain’s trouble is he can’t decide whether he should side with the republicans, most of whom seem to be on the conservative end of the spectrum, or whether he should be a “maverick.” McCain seems to easily succumb to peer pressure as witnessed by the Sarah Palin pick.
I read an article that said Mac is Back. Don’t think so. He’s acting just like he did during the campaign, trying to appease at the sake of the greater good.
McCain says he won’t vote for the stimulus bill as is. What he doesn’t say is that he and many republicans will ultimately affirm the stimulus bill. They’re just trying to gain power through politics instead of substance. Just like the campaign, just like the last 8 years. Do they think we’re not watching?
Republicans tried to embarrass Obama?

Politico: In the party�s first organized attempt to embarrass President Obama, Senate Republicans voted in unexpectedly heavy numbers against Timothy Geithner for Treasury secretary on Monday night, even though he was easily confirmed.

The vote was 60-34, with 30 Republicans opposed. Geithner was quickly sworn in Monday night at the Treasury Department, where President Obama praised his new secretary.

�At this moment of challenge and crisis, Tim�s work and the work of the entire Treasury Department must begin at once,� Obama said. �We cannot lose a day because every day the economic picture is darkening here and across the globe.�

But the nomination vote gave conservatives an opportunity to rail against Geithner, as conservative talk radio rallied a flood of calls to Capitol Hill on Monday opposing his nomination. A majority of Senate Republicans heeded those calls, making it clear that Geithner may have a credibility gap with the GOP.

If republicans are listening to conservative talk radio, they’re in some real sorry shape. Obama has the terrorists rattled and the talk radio types running scared, afraid that their power, post Bush, will fade. Talk radio types have something in common with the terrorists. What do you know.

In this video, Sen. Mitch McConnell says Obama is having trouble getting democratic support.

CBO: House plan offers ‘noticeable impact’

January 27, 2009


Oh look!!! A real CBO analysis of the complete stimulus bill!! Imagine.

WASHINGTON, Jan. 27 (UPI) — The bulk of spending and tax cuts in a House-crafted plan to stimulate the U.S. economy would have a “noticeable impact” by 2010, budget analysts said.

A Congressional Budget Office report issued Monday indicated about two-thirds of the measures in the $825 billion package would migrate into the economy by the end of fiscal year 2010, producing “a noticeable impact on economic growth and unemployment,” The Washington Post (NYSE:WPO) reported Tuesday.

(snip)

The final analysis is only slightly different from a preliminary CBO cost estimate that caught the eye of congressional Republicans when it was released last week, the Post said, with House Minority Leader John Boehner of Ohio saying the preliminary figures proved that “slow-moving government spending programs” would do little to revive the economy compared with GOP-preferred tax cuts.

House Speaker Nancy of California praised the new CBO report Tuesday, calling it the “first analysis of the entire House recovery bill,” and saying it proved the measure “provides immediate stimulus to help create jobs.”

Officials: Family planning money may be dropped from stimulus

January 27, 2009


Spinelss crap weasels. The only thing that could maybe make them look like less of idiotic surrender monkeys is if they give on this, and then cram the rest of the stimulus bill up the R’s tuchus. Extra bonusy joy? The CBO zombie meme rears it’s head… again.

WASHINGTON � House Democrats are likely to jettison family planning funds for the low-income from an $825 billion economic stimulus bill, officials said late Monday, following a personal appeal from President Barack Obama at a time the administration is courting Republican critics of the legislation.

Several officials said a final decision was expected on Tuesday, coinciding with Obama’s scheduled visit to the Capitol for separate meetings with House and Senate Republicans.

(snip)

Under the provision, states no longer would be required to obtain federal permission to offer family planning services � including contraceptives � under Medicaid, the health program for the low-income.

Democrats considered the politically-potent change as congressional budget experts estimated it would take slightly longer for the overall legislation to achieve an impact on the economy than the administration projects.

The Congressional Budget Office said the economy would feel the effects of almost two-thirds of the money over the next year and a half. The administration claims 75 percent of the funding would be absorbed in that period of time, and Obama has pledged that the bill he signs will meet that target and either save or create up to 4 million jobs.

There are other views on this (some reflected in comments by our illustrious and learned commenters), and since I’m scrambling for time, use this as my much more articulate and well thought out than I would make defense, or even this.

VIDEO– Chris Matthews on family planning measure in stimulus bill: "It sounds a little like China"

January 26, 2009

By GottaLaff

Want to get Paddy steaming mad? Play her this video.

She ranted, justifiably, on the phone to me earlier about this Tweety moment of typically beef-brained verbal flatulence, and I hadn’t seen it yet. Now that I have, I may have to call her and rant back.

Cavuto on contraception funding in stimulus

January 26, 2009

This is the crap I was talking about here. Think Progress has more, and just for shits and giggles, check out this, which Cavuto covers also.

Why am I smarter than Chris Van Hollen?

January 26, 2009


Van Hollen is on right now with Norah O’Donnell (I’ll give her props, she was just as hard with the R who was on) and predictably got hammered with the “100’s of billions for contraceptives” meme. I figured since he is the chairman of the DCCC, he’d be prepared to deflect their talking points. No. Such. Luck.

Hey Chris, check this out-

First of all, the family-planning program that Pelosi supports expanding in the stimulus bill was created in 1972 under the leadership of Republican president Richard Nixon.

What’s being proposed is an expansion in the number of states that can use Medicaid money, with a federal match, to help low-income women prevent unwanted pregnancies. Of the 26 states that already have Medicaid waivers for family planning, eight are led by Republican governors (AL, FL, MS, SC, CA, LA, MN and RI — a ninth, MO, had a GOP governor until this past November). If this policy is truly a taxpayer gift to “the abortion industry,” as John Boehner and House Republicans claim, where are the GOP governors promising to end the program in their states?

Next time you’re going to go on the teevee Chris, drop me a line and I’ll try and get you up to speed.

Added- Okay, I officially give up. I just surfed over to Fox where the “Chair of the DNC’s Womens Group” or some such was also mawmawing herself to death about this with Neal Cavuto. Something really has to be done about all the mealy mouthing stupidity on our side.

The Stimulus Bill Is Posted Online

January 24, 2009


Can someone dig thru it and see if there’s any money for me?

The House Rules Committee today posted the text of the Stimulus package, a.k.a. House Resolution 1, a.k.a. the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009.

The 647-page bill was introduced by Rep. David Obey, D-Wisc., as well as Reps. Charlie Rangel, D-N.Y., Henry Waxman, D-Calif., and Barney Frank, D-Mass., among others.

Conservative media figures falsely suggest that Reich proposed excluding white males from stimulus package

January 24, 2009

I heard a caller parrot this on CSpan this morning and was going to check into it, but Media Matters did my work for me. How would any sane person think Robert Reich would really say this? Just more lies.

Michelle Malkin, Rush Limbaugh, and Sean Hannity have falsely asserted or suggested that Robert Reich, speaking at a congressional forum, proposed that jobs created by the economic stimulus package should exclude white males. In fact, Reich has repeatedly stated that he favors a stimulus plan that “includ[es] women and minorities, and the long-term unemployed” in addition to skilled professionals and white male construction workers, not one that is solely limited to them.

Can we set up re-education camps for the media? For some, it just might be the first time.