Today: Senate Voting On Stimulus Package
The Senate is set to vote today on President Obama's economic recovery package, which is assured passage after it cleared the 60-vote threshold yesterday to overcome a Republican filibuster. Next up, the bill will head to a House-Senate conference committee to iron out differences, with the White House hoping to get it fully passed in both chambers within a week's time.
Obama Promoting Stimulus In Red Area of Florida, Then Meeting Blue Dogs
President Obama is holding a 12:05 p.m. ET town hall in Fort Myers, Florida, an area that voted for John McCain and where unemployment is now 10%, to promote the stimulus plan alongside Republican Governor Charlie Crist. At 5:50 p.m. ET, he will meet with members of the Blue Dog Coalition at the White House.
Biden Meeting With Freshman Senators
Vice President Biden is hosting a cocktail reception this evening at the Naval Observatory, meeting with freshman Senators from both parties.
Geithner Launching Bailout v. 2.0 Today
Treasury Secretary Tim Geithner is set to roll out a revamped financial bailout, focusing on increased corporate transparency of how public money is being spent. The plan will reportedly incorporate public-private partnerships to buy up trouble assets, with the goal of increasing the availability of credit to consumers and businesses.
NYT: Geithner Resisted Tougher Restrictions On Banks
The New York Times reports that Tim Geithner successfully opposed calls within the Obama Administration for harder restrictions on banks receiving federal aid. Others, such as David Axelrod, had favored tougher limits on executive pay, and Geithner also turned back those who wanted to directly replace bank executives or wipe out shareholders.
Report: Friction Between Cantor And Rest Of GOP Leadership
Roll Call reports that House Minority Whip Eric Cantor had a very angry private conversation with Minority Leader John Boehner, after Boehner boasted about how the entire House Republican caucus voted against the stimulus bill -- without the benefit of a big whip operation. Boehner's spokesman played down the event, saying the team is unified: "Our focus is where it should be: on helping the American people, not wasting time on inside-the-Beltway gossip."
Ohio Lt. Governor Forms Senate Committee For 2010
Ohio Lt. Governor Lee Fisher (D) has formed an exploratory committee to run for the open Senate seat of retiring GOP Senator George Voinovich. Former Congressman Rob Portman is current in on the Republican side, while other possible Democrats include Rep. Tim Ryan and Secretary of State Jennifer Brunner, in what is expected to be a close election.
Bredesen Hits Back At Health Care Critics
Governor Phil Bredesen (D-TN) is firing back at health-care advocates who oppose a potential appointment for him as Secretary of Health and Human Services. Responding to criticism over his cuts in the state health care program, which removed coverage for 168,000 people, Bredesen told the Wall St. Journal: "I did what I had to do and I'd have no choice to do the same thing over again."