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Senate Passes Major Stimulus Hurdle

February 9, 2009 - by Donny Shaw

The Senate just voted to invoke cloture on the $829 billion Nelson-Collins substitute amendment to H.R. 1, the economic stimulus package. The final vote tally was 61-36. Sixty votes were required for the motion to pass. All Democrats voted in favor.

These three Republicans joined the Democrats in voting to advance the bill:

Sen. Susan Collins [R, ME]
Sen. Olympia Snowe [R, ME]
Sen. Arlen Specter [R, PA]

This vote on cloture officially winds down the debate of the Nelson-Collins amendment and sets up final passage of the the underlying bill itself. Under the rules, the debate is now limited to 30 more hours, though, by way of a unanimous consent agreement, the final vote on passage is scheduled to take place tomorrow at 1pm. That vote is expected to pass (with probably the same exact tally as today’s vote), sending the bill to a conference committee to be reconciled with the version passed by the House.

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  • pdorsett 02/09/2009 12:41pm

    Outrageous, This is a crime against the American taxpayer!!! These three Republicans should get their pink slip!! My children and grandchildren will be in economic slavery if this Bill is not stopped. I’m furious, the very idea these three represent Republicans! Change parties and get out. You three have the ability to really make a difference but you choose to think of YOUR seat and think of only your own self and paycheck! Protect all my votes… so I can keep my seat. Shame on you. If you think we are stupid out here, we are not. Trying to cram this down our throat is gong to backfire! We are in no mood to bail out any more banks or listen to anymore Obama propaganda. Throwing money at black holes will not make jobs. Government slave work has arrived. America land of the free is fading away.

  • Anonymous 02/09/2009 12:57pm

    We’ve been taken over by the Socialize-Democrats. Their playbook is to blame the Bush admin. and the Republicians for everything, but don’t have a plan what so ever.

  • jp215 02/09/2009 1:26pm

    Republicans had no major problems with Bush’s bailout and that didn’t even attempt to create jobs? The party politics makes me sick I give the 3 republicans credit for breaking the partisanship by voting for a bill their party hates.
    Republicans have been all wrong lately so why no are they right?
    We need to invest in infrastructure and science because that money spent can come back if spent correctly.

  • Anonymous 02/09/2009 2:04pm

    The Republicans on here and the elected ones who are wailing about the stimulus package are so freaking out of touch with the American public. This is why YOU PEOPLE LOST the election! Tax breaks are ALL you care about, and Obama IS giving tax breaks. What about the 3.6 million jobs lost! This stimulus package will HELP the jobless get jobs. It’s not about socialization, it’s about people working! Get a freaking clue!

  • Comm_reply
    Anonymous 02/10/2009 7:04am

    So where do you think the jobs will come from? Do you think they will be conjured out of thin air? Are you going to work in road construction, Bridge construction? Will you be working to re structure our electrical grid? Unfortuneately, the uninformed continue to wish that Employers will increase employment for every one. They then wish that these new jobs will be making extremely high salaries, such as the autoworkers. Then the want the employers to cut prices on their products so that minimum wage earners can then afford all the luxuries.

    When I was layed off in 2001 after 9/11 no one came to my aid. No one bailed out my industry, but it continues on and so do I. I did all the things necessary to pay my bills and keep my home out of foreclosure. I did all of this without government assistance or Socialized medicine.

    It seems to me that everyone wants, but no one wants to pay or work. I see listings for jobs all the time, but most beleive that they are jobs beneath their worth. This is true for anything that requires sweat, long hours, adverse conditions, etc.

    I actually believe that the layoffs are a good thing, They allow companies to trim unnecessary positions in the face of economic problems. It should teach Americans to save and put aside. It should also help people understand that Business are in the game for PROFITS not EMPLOYMENT.

    I would like to leave you with two quotes. These quotes are old but hold true today.
    1. Be careful of biting the bait until you know their is not a hook in it. – Thomas Jefferson.
    2. I HEARTILY ACCEPT the motto, — “That government is best which governs least”;(1) and I should like to see it acted up to more rapidly and systematically. Carried out, it finally amounts to this, which also I believe, — “That government is best which governs not at all”; and when men are prepared for it, that will be the kind of government which they will have. Government is at best but an expedient; but most governments are usually, and all governments are sometimes, inexpedient. The objections which have been brought against a standing army, and they are many and weighty, and deserve to prevail, may also at last be brought against a standing government. The standing army is only an arm of the standing government. The government itself, which is only the mode which the people have chosen to execute their will, is equally liable to be abused and perverted before the people can act through it. Witness the present Mexican war,(2) the work of comparatively a few individuals using the standing government as their tool; for, in the outset, the people would not have consented to this measure. – Thomas Paine “Civil Disobedience”

  • Comm_reply
    Anonymous 02/10/2009 10:28am
    Link Reply
    + -1

    The first six years of the Bush Administration showed the largest growth in history the Dow reached over 1400 points.what happened?The Democrats took over both houses ACORN forced bad loans on banks Barney Frank and Charles Schumer were the ring leaders in Congress and MSNBC made an IDOL out of OBAMA and the unthinking people of this country fell for this masquerade.We are not out of touch we read and listen to ALL the facts

  • Anonymous 02/09/2009 2:07pm

    Thank you to the three Republicans who actually DO care about the working person. Going against the majority of your party isn’t easy, but you did the right thing. Kudos to you and the working American public thanks you.

  • timcharper 02/09/2009 2:31pm

    Ugh.. This is robbery. To those of you who think the stimulus package was a good idea, please study what made the great depression “great”.

  • glr 02/09/2009 2:56pm

    Say good bye to the economy and taxes as we know it. They will go through the roof now and not only will our generation pay the price so will all future generations. If you want the government to give you everything I guess you got your wish. I hope the water park in Shreveport and the aid for veterans in the Philippines stimulates us all! When will our elected politicians listen to the people that elected them, they are all the ones that should be taken responsibility regardless of party. The only way to fix this is term limits for congress and move them back into our Social Security and medical systems.

    6 of 8 good years during Bush 2 bad years during a democratic controlled congress. I just can’t figure out how politically or economically it went so bad so quickly.

  • Cynsayshi 02/09/2009 4:14pm

    Just because the Republicans are wrong, does not therefore make the Socialists, excuse me, Democrats right.

    This bill is a BAD idea. While there may be some short term job “creation” in there, it’s mostly short-term projects, not long term career prospects. And the careers that should be created need to be introduced OUTSIDE the government, not just more bureaucratic positions that cost more than they “stimulate.” Any job that has to be paid by the government is going to cost more in salary and benefits than will in turn be received back in income tax, FICA, etc. Government job creation is a crock.

    Kill the pig!

  • Anonymous 02/09/2009 4:21pm

    I am so proud to be an American and I am greatful that we voted for a man who cares for America. He is one of us and has never put himself above that image. No other President has ever humbled themselve,nor be in touch with the American people as he does on the internet,TV,and in person. He keeps us informed of what is really going on. Obviously the Government has ripped off the American people for years, because before Obama stepped up to lead this nation our social security that belongs to hard working americans is about depleted and we owe China money..WHY..what happened to America being the richest and blessed country in the world. Government Coruption..GREED..Now we have no choice but to rebuild America because if we dont do it now with the stimulus package America will destroy itself.

  • usaii 02/09/2009 4:30pm
    Link Reply
    + -1

    I just hope the American people are getting what they voted for. But I just don’t understand voting for a bill that is nothing more than a giant spending bill and has nothing to do with fixing anything. the three senators that thought they had to cross the line hopefully will be hunting a new job in the very near future.

  • Anonymous 02/10/2009 3:08am

    Bailout does not and did not mean Stimulus. I’m sick and tired of this Republican/Democrat debate and blame game. This Bill has so little “Stimulus” content and so much fat that should be on the floor to be debated before it was even considered. I feel sorry for myself and thousands if not millions of others who will be without work in the coming months. Please download and at least skim through the actuall bill instead of standing a party line and say this is a good or bad idea because of the party supporting or not supporting it. This Bill is not a “Stimulus” package no matter what President Obama say’s. It not a Republican or Democrat response. It’s my opinion and it would be majority of yours if you took the time to quit blaming or excusing and read the damn thing.

  • Anonymous 02/10/2009 3:50am


  • Anonymous 02/10/2009 7:33am

    The three Republicrats are turncoats!

  • Anonymous 02/10/2009 1:43pm

    Ok who was in charge of the Senate and who was president for the last 8 years.
    Ok enough said!

  • Anonymous 02/12/2009 3:59am

    This plan is no good for anyone. Right now 20% of our tax dollars goes to interest on our existing debt. We collect about $2.5 Trillion in taxes and $500 Billion goes toward interest. Our weighted interest rate is 8.37%, and we’re offering short-term T-Bills right now instead of locking in lower rates long-term.

    OK so lets follow President Obama’s lead on this and blame President Bush and the last 8 years. He doubled our debt right? Moved it from $5 Trillion to $11 Trillion in the 8 years as President. Consider what President Obama has proposed with this bill and Mr. Geithner’s bank bailout of $2 Trillion – in his first month as President, Mr. Obama has committed us to $3 Trillion dollars in spending. He’s almost half way there to what took Mr. Bush 8 years to spend.

    Here’s the thing though – our debt isn’t $11 Trillion its around 60 trillion. Where does that extra $50 Trillion dollars come from? Social Security and Medicare. Remember the last time we were in this crunch? That Great Depression era? Government stepped in and spent a whole lot of money. Well we’re still paying for it – together medicare and social security consume 40+ percent of our annual budget.

    So lets add it up – 20% to interest, 40% to social security that means only 40% or 1 Trillion of that 2.5 Trillion collected every year provides us with the services that we receive from the governtment. We’re not going to get this $800 billion from that budget, we will have to borrow – meaning that we will be paying for this for decades or even a century.

    Still not concerned? Look what happend this past summer when China only hinted that it would sell off some of its interest in US Treasuries. The dollar plummetted – oil went to $147 / barrel and food prices went through the roof. The biggest threat to our national security right now is not terrorism – it’s financial. Over the next two years we’re going to borrow another 3-5 Trillion from countries like China and Russia. Imagine if next time China carries through on its plan – it will make the current economic issues look like a boom time.

    It’s time to stop the spending, stop the borrowing hunker down and start paying down the debt. Don’t think tax cuts will help? I am a small business owner, thankful that we are actually doing well at this time. I need to hire more people – but I am not. Why? because I am concerned about the employees I do have – and protecting their jobs, health insurance, etc. I want a buffer there so I can keep them employed through a dry spell. If you waived payroll taxes now I would hire 2 people immediately because it frees up cash. Doesn’t help curb that social security and medicare – but hey what’s $50 Trillion between friends?

  • Anonymous 02/13/2009 2:35pm

    Well said. Government projects do not stimulate the economy. There are more ways this can go bad than there are it could go well. Increased debt, inflation, increased taxes for the middle classes, continued loss of wealth, new massive government, etc… Obama has signed one bill and spent 800 billion plus interest. Plus much of this bill is just government budget items. Are these budgets likely to go down? If the democrats cared about stimulating the economy they would institute Louis Gohmert’s plan. That bill would only take one page and be easily understood by anyone who can read or listen.

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