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Will Republicans Even Know What Is In The Bill Before They Vote?

Evidently Dem Hill staffers don't know. K Street lobbyists do, though.

Mark Binker, a political reporter and blogger in Greensboro, talks about his efforts to find out what is in the latest version of the "stimulus" bill:

A great many of us scruffy media types who work in the states have been looking for anything resembling meaningful information regarding the stimulus bill Congress is supposedly due to pass this week.

While some broad strokes are available, there's nothing like the level of detail out there that would let us say with any precision or confidence how much money North Carolina might get for a particular program or to even begin thinking about translating that down to a county level...

...At this point, I have a great deal of sympathy for the point of view that any piece of legislation, much less one that spends $790 billion, which cannot stand up to public scrutiny before it is voted upon might not be worth the paper you haven't printed it on yet. This hardly fits with promises of a more open and accountable government we've heard so much about.

There are a few people who are getting a good look at the latest version of the bill:
We're receiving E-mails from Capitol Hill staffers expressing frustration that they can't get a copy of the stimulus bill agreed to last night at a price of $789 billion. What's more, staffers are complaining about who does have a copy: K Street lobbyists. E-mails one key Democratic staffer: "K Street has the bill, or chunks of it, already, and the congressional offices don't. So, the Hill is getting calls from the press (because it's leaking out) asking us to confirm or talk about what we know--but we can't do that because we haven't seen the bill. Anyway, peeps up here are sort of a combo of confused and like, 'Is this really happening?'" Reporters pressing for details, meanwhile, are getting different numbers from different offices, especially when seeking the details of specific programs.

Worse, there seem to be several different versions of what was agreed upon, with some officials circulating older versions of the package that seems to still be developing. Leadership aides said that it will work out later today and promised that lawmakers will get time to review the bill before Friday's vote.

The last version I saw posted was over 1400 pages long. Last time I checked, Friday is tomorrow.


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Comments (15)

Hope and Change you can bel... (Below threshold)

Hope and Change you can believe in!

It's no different in Maryland...liberals run everything, corruption, and spending money and raises taxes and depending on the federal government to help out with money....just to go back asking again when they spend more on anything and kickbacks.

Reminds me...if liberal ideology and methods are so great, why is Maryland in such poor shape?

PASS IT! PASS THE BILL NOW... (Below threshold)

PASS IT! PASS THE BILL NOW! DON'T WAIT! Shit the people might see it and READ it! Hurry, this is an EMERGENCY! Don't look, don't read, JUST VOTE YES!!!!!

Exit question: Why are the states most in need of a bailout run by Democrats?

The Dems own this bag of cr... (Below threshold)

The Dems own this bag of crap and will have to carry it all the way to next election day. I wonder how comfortable they will be holding that bag out on the campaign trail in about a year. Should really stink by then.

Actions truly are louder th... (Below threshold)
Good Captain:

Actions truly are louder than words.

There's at least one versio... (Below threshold)

There's at least one version later than the strike-through 1400+ page version. I haven't checked today because I don't have the time to read it, much less figure out what it all means.

And neither do our Reps. & Sens. Or our President.

Nobody knows what's actually in this bill.

"Nobody knows what's act... (Below threshold)

"Nobody knows what's actually in this bill."

I believe we're going to be getting a wonderful (and hopefully not fatal) example of the Law of Unintended Consequences.

Gonna be a damn expensive demo, though... Okay, kids - watch and learn!

Just goes to show why we sh... (Below threshold)

Just goes to show why we should have term limits. I think democrats are in big trouble on this one. There are signs of credit coming back towards normal. Today, retail sales up. Foreclosure rates slowing. Even the Baltic Dry Index is coming up (meaning the global economy looks to be increasing again).

The past eight years as Obama would like to say were horrible. Yet up until the end of 2007 the US economy was doing VERY well, perhaps he forgets easily or isn't very smart. The spending spree (pork spree) is going to cause a real measure of wealth (productivity) to decrease. In addition, it is going to cause inflation just as the economy starts ramping up anyway. The high demand is going to cause even worse inflation.

Shameful. To top it off, the geniuses who are voting on this haven't even read it.

Shameful. Shameful. Shameful.

If you are against this Bil... (Below threshold)
Kevin H:

If you are against this Bill, and true to your convictions, you'll ask your House member or Senator to request that all funds going to your State be rejected and returned to the U.S. treasury. Obviously you feel your State won't benefit, so just say "NO"... your State doesn't want any money. Just like I'm sure you will all return your tax cuts.

Why would we return the tax... (Below threshold)

Why would we return the tax cuts? That is the one part of the bill that is truly stimulus and that all Republicans support. We would like MORE tax cuts and would happily accept them. If we didn't want to accept the tax cuts, after fighting to keep them in the bill, we would be hypocrites. I'll take my $13 a week. It won't buy any $600 earrings, but I'll take it anyway.

For those who don't recognize the earring reference -- http://firstread.msnbc.msn.com/archive/2008/07/09/1190066.aspx

From what I am reading toni... (Below threshold)

From what I am reading tonight I learned it might not even be possible for governors to reject the funds. There is a provision in the final bill (according to some staffers who have reviewed it) that provides for state legislatures to vote to accept the funds even if their governor doesn't want them.

Re tax cuts in the final ve... (Below threshold)

Re tax cuts in the final version of the bill:

"Approximately $75 billion in true tax relief was CUT from the Nelson-Collins package. So, while the overall size of the package may have gotten slightly smaller, the spending actually increased."

"Cut car credit (from $11.5 billion to $1.6 billion)

· Cut "Make Work Pay" credit from $500/individual to $400/individual, and from $1,000/couple to $800/couple (approximately $28 billion less in tax relief)

· Cut home buyer credit from $35 billion to $6.6 billion (limited to first-time home-buyers and limited to $8,000)

· Cut Net Operating Loss significantly to as little as $947million (makes it only applicable to employers with $15 million or less in revenue--but only for the year 2008, in other words it provide no help for losses in 2009)"

Not only is this bill bad, ... (Below threshold)

Not only is this bill bad, but Obama is working on a plan to reduce the house payments of individuals in foreclosure. Does this mean I have the right as taxpayer to tell those people receiving this bailout how to spend the money? How many of these people have loans they never should have qualified for in the first place? Sounds like more welfare to me. what has happened to personal responsibility?

MONTGOMERY, Ala. (AP) - Two... (Below threshold)

MONTGOMERY, Ala. (AP) - Two former members of Gov. Bob Riley's administration will receive $195 per hour for helping oversee money that Alabama gets from a federal economic stimulus package.

An emergency contract signed by the governor provides for Drayton Nabers and David Perry of the Maynard, Cooper & Gale law firm in Birmingham to receive the payments for two months.

Paralegals from the law firm will receive $85 per hour.

The contract provides for a maximum of $50,000 to be paid for work through March 26.

Nabers was Riley's state finance director from 2003 to 2004, when Riley appointed him to be chief justice of the Alabama Supreme Court.


I think I'm speaking for ma... (Below threshold)

I think I'm speaking for many of us when I read this -


and say, 'Huh?'

Once this abortion fails th... (Below threshold)
retired miilitary:

Once this abortion fails the democrats will blame the republicans stating that due to republican objections they didnt have time to read the bill.

Of course the MSM will play along completely ignoring the truth.






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