Not too long into the Obama administration there seems to be a problem. To name a few of them: economy, economy and economy. Although this recession can’t really be blamed on President Obama, it is, however, now his problem.
Already on Capitol Hill we can see the Democrats with a few problems; squandering their advantage and threatening to snatch defeat from the jaws of victory.
A big credit goes to House Speaker Nancy Pelosi for getting that ball rolling. Under her leadership House Democrats excluded the Republicans from having any voice in the building and crafting of the stimulus package. Acting like children who hadn’t seen Santa for eight years, House Democrats prolifically loaded up the bill with stuff they have only been dreaming of for eight years under the Bush administration. It was payback time.
Contraception, funding the arts, restoration of the national mall, stop-smoking programs. All while Americans were loosing their homes, jobs, and their savings. It was childish and disgraceful. The bill passed the House without a single Republican vote. Despite the efforts by Obama to reach out to the other side, Pelosi decided to take matters into her own hands. When she was asked about the lack of Republican support and if it was partly her fault she gave a short, almost snotty answer about not being partisan but working for the American people. Sure.
Pelosi is apparently tone deaf to the disgust and disappointment of Americans with the bailout package for Wall Street and the banks last year, as well as the voters’ strongly stated desire for change, represented by the election of President Obama. House Democrats are setting the table for failure, and after Bush we are ready for something else.
My guess is President Obama is busy these days sticking pins in his Pelosi doll. To his credit, Obama argued against a lot of the “pork” while stressing that time is our enemy. Apparently Pelosi couldn’t care less.
When the legislation finally hit the Senate floor, amid the cries for more stimulus and less pork, the Republicans pounced. This time could have and would have been much better time spent possibly putting the stimulus package to work and not fighting over things that could have been settled in the House. They want more tax cuts and more real stimulus — stuff that will create jobs now. Not some proposal that may pay dividends years down the road. And they’re right.
Now that the bill has been finally passed we can get to work. If you are wondering, this is how the bill sized up.
According the Washington Post this is how the bill would break down:
-About 525 billion, 64% would be put into the economy within 19 months through spending and tax breaks.
-Heath and Human Services, labor, education. 91.3 billion
-Tax provisions- 89.7 billion
-State fiscal stabilization fund- 79 billion
-Energy and water- 48.9 billion
-Assistance for unemployed workers and struggling families- 45.7 billion
-Health insurance assistance for the unemployed- 40.8 billion
-Agriculture, nutrition and rural development- 26.9 billion
-Heath information technology- 20.2 billion
(Information collected from http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/graphic/2009/02/01/GR2009020100154.html)