Senate Debate on Stimulus Begins Today Amid Efforts to Win Republican Support
By JAKE TAPPER
Feb. 2, 2009
President Obama welcomed the rare Republican supporter of his economic stimulus bill today when Vermont Gov. Jim Douglas arrived in the capital to lobby GOP senators to vote for it.
President Obama gets the first inkling of Republican support for his economic stimulus bill: Vermont Gov. Jim Douglas, a Republican, arrives in Washington today to lobby his fellow Republicans to support it.
(Ron Edmonds/AP Photo)
Douglas, who is vice chairman of the National Governors Association, is bucking his party over Obama's massive economic bailout
In a brief photo op with Douglas, Obama said, "What we can't do is let very modest differences get in the way of the overall package moving forward quickly."
Douglas sat next to Obama in the Oval Office and said, "If I were writing it, it might look at little different. But the essence of a recovery package is essential to get the nation's economy moving."
Debate on the Senate version of the bill, which could total $900 billion, began today, and Obama said he believes that with changes, the bill will receive significant Republican support
To sweeten the deal, Obama said that he would set up a board to keep track of how the stimulus money is spent.
I hope the Senate Republicans can all stand united and not vote for the stimulus package..