January 14th, 2009
06:06 PM ET

Pelosi close to finalizing economic recovery package

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Deirdre Walsh
CNN Congressional Producer

Speaker Nancy Pelosi said Democrats are getting close to finalizing the details of an economic recovery package and may release the details as soon as later Wednesday. Pelosi declined to give any details on the bill to reporters, but said she was more confident that Congress would reach the mid – February deadline for getting a bill to Obama’s desk. Pelosi said “it’s about four words – jobs, jobs, jobs, jobs.”

The overall price tag for the package is $800-$850 billion, with about $300–325 billion designated for tax cuts, and $500-$525 billion dedicated to infrastructure spending and aid to the states, according to a senior House Democratic aide. Democratic leaders are still deciding whether to include a so – called “patch” of the AMT, the alternative minimum tax, which would increase the cost of the tax cut section.

After complaints from Democrats, a tax credit Obama proposed for employers was dropped. But another tax cut aimed at businesses, to allow businesses to write off their losses, called “net operating loss carryback,” is still in the package, although it’s unclear if it will remain in the final bill. Republicans support the carryback provision, but some Democrats on the Hill want to drop the carryback provision and shift more money to spending on infrastructure.

There has been a flurry of meetings on Capitol Hill on Wednesday. Obama’s incoming chief of staff Rahm Emanuel met with House Democratic leaders. Jason Furman, a top economic aide to Obama, held a meeting with House Democratic freshmen this morning. Democratic leaders are holding another meeting this afternoon to work through final decisions on which tax cuts will be included.

This aide wouldn’t rule out releasing details Wednesday, but said it’s more likely there will be an announcement Thursday.

Filed under: Bailout Turmoil • Barack Obama • Raw Politics
soundoff (6 Responses)
  1. Sharon

    Where exactly is she thinking that All this money is going to come from?

    I've heard a horrible rumor that Congress is trying to find a way to get into the 401k plans and pension plans of hard working Americans so they can get their hands on that money these people have worked hard and saved all their lives and they promise to pay it back per social security?

    Funny they have told us for years Social Securtiy is running out of funds due to all the illegal aliens and people who never worked a day in their lives taking from it when they put Nothing into it, so that would be funny if they try to use that one on us!!!

    Really believe it or not Most Americans are NOT stupid!

    January 14, 2009 at 10:10 pm |
  2. Lorie Ann, Buellton, California

    At the end of the day, it's still 850 billion, on top of the 700 billion. If it helps the country great, if it doesn't, can we kick congress to the curb and take their pensions with us.

    Lorie Ann, Buellton, Calif.

    January 14, 2009 at 7:50 pm |
  3. Annie Kate

    So how close does the House's bill resemble what Obama wanted in his economic recovery plan? And are there any earmarks buried in it? I hope not – I would be amazed if there weren't but I'm willing to be surprised by this Congress. Earmarks, I hope will become a thing of the past. If something is worth asking for funding for, then it is important enough to be in a bill where it is very visible in the funding request. If its not, then it shouldn't be funded anyway.

    January 14, 2009 at 7:41 pm |
  4. Lisa in CA

    And meanwhile, the middle class still suffers. No where does there appear to be relief for us. Until the jobs are actually created and paying a wage sufficient for us to pay our mortgages, we will continue to lose our homes and home values decline. And with the carryback provision, it is better for the banks if they do foreclose as they can then claim the losses.

    At some point, it would be really neat if these so-called representatives would actually talk to their constituents instead of the so-called "experts". We can tell them how they can fix economy without putting the country into bankruptcy, which they are well on their way to doing.

    Hopefully by 2010 we'll finally have had enough of our reps catering to business and vote them out in favor of reps who will cater to the citizens of this country ... you know, those who actually elect them and whom they are to represent.

    January 14, 2009 at 7:00 pm |
  5. Timothy Gibson

    Does anyone really have any confidence that anything congress will do in regards to the economy. In all appearances it is a lot of smoke hot air on an already cold economy.

    As of yet, there has been no accountability for the trillions of dollars spent, state by state lines up with a short fall of cash, unable, or unwilling to come up with a balanced and reasonable budget. It gives one reason to ponder how any of those elected into congress from the bottom to the top can balance or manage their own personal budgets outside of the windfalls of the lobbist in Washington.

    Have we hit rock bottom, not yet. Will we hit rock bottom, you can bet your bottom dollar.

    January 14, 2009 at 6:27 pm |
  6. Larry

    I hope that every item in the package is made public; we were promised transparency, so put it all up on the net so we can all see it.

    January 14, 2009 at 6:26 pm |