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Friday, February 12, 2010

Bi Partisan Jobs Bill On the Brink?

The Senate leadership has pulled the rug out from underneath a bi partisan agreement for a jobs bill.

Last night, after Max Baucus and Charles Grassley spent weeks negotiating a bipartisan jobs bill, Harry Reid scuttled their efforts and put forward his own $15 billion plan. Democrats, Republicans, and the White House all were caught off guard. Reid's new plan is limited to the Schumer-Hatch payroll tax credit, highway spending, and a few other measly programs. That bellow you hear is the Obama-isn't-liberal-enough left.

This is a head scratcher. There was bi partisan agreement and the President was on board. Now, Harry Reid has pulled that agreement and scaled it back significantly. As such, both Republicans and Democrats are unhappy.

You can bet that a series of fingerpointing is sure to follow. What should trouble everyone is this. Everyone agrees that a bi partisan jobs bill needs to be done. This is a very uncontroversial piece of legislation. Yet, it's not at all clear that even this will pass. As such, it appears almost all legislation will ground to a halt.


John said...

this was a very weird move. I wonder why reid decided to do what he did...maybe the snow days gave some of the politicians a chance to think about the repercussions their actions will have?

personally i would prefer they use some of the TARP money coming back in and reroute that towards jobs instead of writing another cheque

AG said...

This is not a surprise. After the way he (intentionally?) botched the health care bill, I don't imagine the Senate Democrats had much faith in Max Baucus. When Baucus announced that he and Grassley wanted to attach an Estate Tax cut to the bill that was the last straw.