Read a Pacific Northwest, liberal perspective on world, national, and local politics. From majestic Redmond, Washington - the Northwest Progressive Institute Advocate.

Friday, February 13, 2009

U.S. Senate passes final version of stimulus plan, sending it to President Obama's desk

All the votes are finally in... the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act is heading out of the Capitol and to President Obama's desk for his signature.

Sixty senators voted "aye", thirty eight (all Republicans) voted "nay".

Senator Ted Kennedy, who is undergoing treatment for a malignant brain tumor in Florida, was not present. Neither was Al Franken, who has not yet been sworn in as the junior senator from Minnesota.

Senator Sherrod Brown of Ohio, who had returned home to be with family following the death of his mother, had to fly back to the District of Columbia to provide Vote Number Sixty. (Thanks, Republicans).

Meanwhile, former Republican presidential nominee John McCain jeered at his colleagues Olympia Snowe, Arlen Specter, and Susan Collins for voting "aye":
"Only three," Senator John McCain, Republican of Arizona, said as he described the program as anything but bipartisan. He called it a thing of "unprecedented and historical proportions" that would saddle future taxpayers with debt.
Gee, John, for a second there we thought you were talking about the Iraq occupation. Or the Bush tax cuts. You almost had us. But then we remembered that your mavericky goodness is all just a sad illusion.

Anyway, as expected, the Pacific Northwest's senators were again split down party lines, with Democrats enthusiastically supporting H.R. 1 and Republicans opposed. The wrangling and the negotiating is finally over - the stimulus plan is ready to become law. Let's get the aid flowing and put our common wealth to work.


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