Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Reid Breaks The Republican Filibuster Of Obama's Small Business Jobs Bill


Prez pushing the small biz bill at a Tastee Sub Shop in Edison, NJ

Despite our disparaging remarks-- and fabulous picture-- about the Senate yesterday, they are all back in town (except Gregg who was presumably doing something in New Hampshire for Ayotte and Murkowski, who is still trying to figure our her future) and back at work. Priority #1: Obama's (and Barney Frank's) Small Business Jobs and Credit Act which passed the House on June 17, 241-182 (only 3 Republicans breaking with Boehner's obstructionist posture), and has been languishing in the Senate under a Republican filibuster, clearly motivated by a desire to worsen the economy to hurt Democrats' chances in the November elections. The filibuster was broken yesterday just before noon as George Voinovich (R-OH) and George LeMieux (R-FL) abandoned McConnell and his "Party of No!" obstructionism and voted with all the Democrats (including even Ben Nelson, as well as Lieberman). Reid pulled off the cloture victory 61-37. Interestingly, both of Maine's senators and Scott Brown (R-MA), who have prided themselves on sticking with more or less mainstream conservative principles as the Republican Party slid further and further into the abyss of extremism, voted to continue the filibuster of a bill meant to reinvigorate the economy and make sure small businesses could get credit and would be encouraged to hire American workers.

Earlier in the day Mike Johanns (R-NE) offered a cockamamie amendment to gut healthcare form. It failed 46-52, all Republicans voted for it, along with 5 ConservaDems, Evan Bayh (IN), Michael Bennet (CO), Blanche Lincoln (AR; a co-sponsor), Ben Nelson (NE) and Mark Pryor. It ostensibly addressed a redtape matter and Democrats tried addressing that too-- although, of course, the Republicans filibustered that to death.
Many Democrats who support repealing the “1099 provision,” which is named for the associated IRS form, panned the offset that Johanns would use to pay for the change.

The Democratic alternative would exempt businesses with fewer than 25 employees and would raise the reporting threshold for the remaining companies to $5,000, from the $600 under current law. Bill Nelson, D-Fla., proposed paying for the $10.1 billion cost of the amendment by preventing the largest oil companies from obtaining a 6 percent tax deduction designed to aid domestic manufacturing.

That failed to get through the GOP filibuster, 56-42 ConservaDems Mark Begich (AK), Mary Landrieu (LA), and Blanche Lincoln (AR).

Passage of the Small Business Jobs Bill has been Obama's top priority-- and, of course, derailing it has been the GOP's. The Big O yesterday after Reid buried the filibuster:
“Today’s vote brings us one step closer to ending the months-long partisan blockade of a small business jobs bill that was written by both Democrats and Republicans. This is a bill that would cut taxes and help provide loans to millions of small business owners who create most of the new jobs in this country. It is fully paid for, it won’t add to the deficit, and small businesses across the country have been waiting for Washington to act on this bill for far too long. I am grateful to Senators Reid, Baucus and Landrieu for their leadership on this issue as well as the two Republican Senators who put partisanship aside and joined Democrats in overcoming this filibuster. I urge all members of the Senate to support final passage as soon as possible."

UPDATE: Small Business Jobs and Credit Act Passes

The Republicans tried to filibuster one more time, it failed, 61-38, Lemieux and Voinovich voting with the Democrats, and then the bill itself passed by the same margin.

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At 8:59 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Just what America needs, more debt.

At 1:27 PM, Blogger carla said...

I think I read in the article that it was paid for and would not add to the I mistaken?


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