Economic stimulus bill passed by House

| Thursday, October 25, 2001

House Republicans achieved a narrow victory Wednesday, passing a $99.5 billion economic stimulus bill. The 214-216 vote is likely indicative of a party showdown when the debate moves on to the Senate.

House Republicans favored rebates and tax cuts for businesses and individuals, while Democrats disapproved, calling the bill a wish list for big companies.

On Tuesday, Democrat Sen. Max Baucus of Montana unveiled a $70 billion proposal that he said would suit the White House. According to published reports, however, it was called by Treasury Secretary Paul O'Neill a "spending package, not a stimulus package." According to CBS News, the Baucus legislation proposes rebates for low-income Americans, faster expensing for depreciation and unemployment benefits, health benefits and agricultural spending.

Sen. Harry Reid (D-NV) and other top Democrats are meanwhile saying a stimulus package must include spending on public health systems and local infrastructure, especially highways.

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