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Economic Stimulus Bill Obama's First Clash with Republicans

By Can Tran     Feb 4, 2009 in Politics
In regards to the economic stimulus package, United States President Obama is having his first clash with Republicans in this regard. This is perhaps one of his toughest domestic battles.
With Barack Obama tackling the job as the new United States President, he is faced with numerous domestic and international problems. As if the international problems were not enough, Obama has a slew of domestic problems. In regards to trying to get the economic stimulus bill passed, Obama is pretty much facing one of his first domestic challenges. So far, Obama has clashed with Republicans in the Senate. At the same time, some Democrats in the Senate have joined with their GOP colleagues.
It was possibly a week ago in which Obama had a bittersweet victory. The economic stimulus package passed through the United States House of Representatives. Unfortunately, there were no GOP votes on board. Ten House Democrats broke away and sided with the House Republicans.
Now, the economic stimulus package is on the US Senate Floor. Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell of Kentucky said that Obama’s economic stimulus bill is unlikely to pass through the Senate floor.
So far, most of the GOP Governors have urged Congress to pass the bill.
Today, Obama responded towards criticism from the GOP in regards to the bill. Obama said that Congress needs to act quickly. In that respect, McConnell said that the amount of the stimulus bill needs to be cut down. In response, Obama launched a counter-offensive and criticized the notion that tax cuts are the only way to help the economy.
I reject those theories, and so did the American people when they went to the polls in November and voted resoundingly for change,” Obama said in his counter attack. He would repeat those words later in the afternoon.
On the same day, Obama would meet with GOP and Democratic Senators. Republican Senator Susan Collins of Maine said that while such issues of combating a flu outbreak and increasing cyber security are very important to her, these are things that do not belong in an economic stimulus.
An article in Reuters outlines the possibilities on how the economic stimulus could pass. One such possibility would be doing away with the restrictions on “Buy American.”
FedEX CEO Fred Smith warned against the provision. He explains that global trade is greatly helped the United States and provided high-paying jobs.
If the Congress passes this buy-American provision, I can assure you – and we operate in 220-some-odd countries around the world and are a huge part of the import-export infrastructure of the United States – we will get retaliation, and it will be American jobs at risk,” Smith said.
The obvious possibility would be shaving off extra billions off the stimulus bill. The amount of the money alone has brought forth much criticism from the GOP. The other obvious possibility outlined would be shaving off spending used for government pet projects.
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