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Reid Finally Bring Stimulus 2 To A Vote, Will A Majority Of Dems Vote For It? | Missouri Political News Service

Reid Finally Bring Stimulus 2 To A Vote, Will A Majority Of Dems Vote For It?

October 11th, 2011 by mopns · No Comments

After ignoring or avoiding the stimulus bill President Obama has been campaigning around the country for the last few weeks, Senate Democrats are finally holding a vote this afternoon on it. Of course, the vote is expected to fail, and despite Sen. Chuck Schumer’s (D-NY) predictions on MSNBC this morning that the “overwhelming majority of Democrats” will vote for it, there are serious questions as to whether a majority of Democrat senators will support the bill.

As the AP reports today, “Democratic unanimity is not assured. Moderates like Sens. Ben Nelson, D-Neb., and Joe Manchin, D-W.Va. — both are up for re-election next year in states where Obama figures to lose — may abandon their party, even as oil-state Democrats have been assuaged by a decision to get rid of an Obama proposal to have oil companies give up tax breaks. ‘We’re likely to lose two, three, four Democrats,’ Sen. Dick Durbin of Illinois, the second ranking Democrat in the Senate, told Chicago’s WTTW-TV Monday.”

And The Hill writes, “Democratic leaders in the Senate are scrambling to avoid defections on President Obama’s jobs package, which appears headed for defeat on Tuesday. A lack of Democratic unity on the president’s bill would be embarrassing for the White House, which has been scolding House Republicans for refusing to vote on the measure.”

Indeed, The Hill points out, “Despite the changes, the legislation still does not enjoy the support of all 53 senators who caucus with the Democrats. A handful of Democrats are undecided or leaning no on the bill. Democrats who will vote no or are leaning no include Sens. Joe Manchin (W.Va.), Jon Tester (Mont.) and Ben Nelson (Neb.), who all hail from red states and are up for reelection next year. . . . [Sen. Joe] Lieberman [ID-CT] opposes the bill because the 5.6 percent surtax on millionaires is being used for new spending instead of reducing the deficit, and will vote against the measure on final passage, his office said. . . . The office of Senate Finance Committee Chairman Max Baucus (D-Mont.) said Monday that he is undecided. ‘He wants to see the whole thing — including amendments — before he decides whether he’ll vote for it,’ an aide said. . . . Tester is officially against the bill. He supports an overhaul of the tax code rather than the changes in the bill and is concerned that the payroll tax cuts would weaken Social Security. . . . Sen. Jim Webb (D-Va.) remained officially undecided on the bill as of Monday, his office said. Webb has a problem with the millionaire’s surtax because it is a tax increase on ordinary earned income. He would prefer closing loopholes and increasing taxes on capital gains. Nelson has spoken disparagingly of Obama’s proposal, but his office said Monday that Nelson has not decided yet how he will vote on it and is still studying the bill. Manchin has been critical of the legislation, though he, too, has not said how he will vote. His office did not respond to questions Monday.”

Meanwhile, jobs groups have declared their opposition to the new surtax Democrat Senate leaders added to the stimulus bill. In a letter to senators last week, a group that includes the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, the National Federation of Independent Businesses, the

National Association of Manufacturers, the National Association of Wholesaler-Distributors, and the Associated General Contractors, wrote, “the burden of the proposed tax increases would fall disproportionately on the income of America’s small and mid-sized businesses who pay taxes at individual rates. . . . the Obama Administration’s own data demonstrates that 4 out of 5 of the taxpayers who will face this surtax are business owners – and thus, increasing the tax burden on these business owners will reduce the amount of capital that they would otherwise have available to invest in their company or hire additional workers.”

“In sum,” the jobs groups write, “the Senate legislation would pay for the President’s Jobs Bill by raising tax rates on hundreds of thousands of business owners, a job killing tax hike to pay for a bill purported to strive for job creation.”


Rasmussen Reports: 51% Say Democratic Agenda In Congress Is Extreme, 47% Say Same of GOP’s



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