$838 billion dollars, that is how much the final version of the Senate’s economic stimulus plan was worth. And on Tuesday, it was officially passed in the Senate.
With President Obama likely to have a strong say in what the final version of the overall economic stimulus plan will be. According to leaders in Congress, talks for a compromise between the Senate’s $838 billion and the House’s $819 plans will begin promptly.
Senator Harry Reid and Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi have both expressed their belief that major progress will be made in the compromise in the first day of talks even though there is no definite timetable for the finalization of the bill.
There are high hopes that the final plan will be on President Obama’s desk ready to be signed by weeks-end.
In an effort to show that his efforts for a stimulus package have received bipartisan support, Obama was seen with Florida Governor Charlie Crist as he was plugging for Congressional support.
While there are many differences between both versions of the plan, there are many of the same topics and goals. Those include:
- Tax cuts for individuals, families, and businesses
- Aid to states
- More money towards education, healthcare, technology, and energy
- Financial assistance for the unemployed and low income families
The plan passed in the Senate with a total vote of 61-37.
The Senate had more bipartisan support than the House of Representatives. The House had a total of zero votes for the bill by Republicans, however, the Senate had three Republicans vote for the plan in addition to the 56 Democrats and 2 Independents.
Questions have risen whether the amount offered by the bill is enough to restore the American democracy, but time will tell whether it is enough.
However, one thing is for certain, without government effort to help create new jobs and stimulate economic growth, there is no telling how destructive this recession could become.