February 2nd, 2009
11:05 AM ET

Stimulus plan's ridiculous items

Ruben Navarrette Jr.
Special to CNN

So much for the new bipartisanship.

On Wednesday, the House of Representatives passed President Obama's $819 billion economic stimulus bill pretty much along party lines, with the exception of 11 Democrats who voted against the plan.

After the vote, Obama said he hoped to "continue to strengthen" the bill as it made its way through the Senate.


soundoff (14 Responses)
  1. Gwenn Baker

    Minimum health care for everybody in this country would do a lot to stimulate the economy. People wouldn't be afraid to start a new business or retire, which would help create jobs. I would like to see Anderson Cooper have as a guest Ezekiel Emanuels who wrote "Healthcare Guaranteed: A simple, secure solution for America". The current stimulus plan does not do enough to create jobs and spends too much money on things that can wait.

    February 3, 2009 at 12:29 am |
  2. Isabel Abreu, Brazil

    What are the consequences of bipartisanship?
    The problem isn’t in Obama get a consensus that cross the partisan divisions in these dark times.
    But achieving some kind of bipartisan consensus requires discussions and concessions on both sides. Obama knows this, hence was the Congress, courting Republicans . The party of Obama didn’t want to give up almost anything. The Republicans didn’t like and voted against. Are minority, lost. But marked position. They did, finally, politics.

    February 2, 2009 at 10:14 pm |
  3. Judy J

    Maybe if the "Democrats" and the "Republicians" keep talking long enough about what we (the working public) need or don't need, the "American Public" will figure out the "Govenment" is NOTgoing to help us.

    We the (working public) need to take care of ourselves and each other. We don't need the government helping us. The government need us to help them.

    Maybe the banks, auto manufacturers, oil companies, insurance companies, HMO's all need to go DOWN and loose their jobs. They can then find out how the "American Public" survives without the fancy houses, fancy cars, yachts, and million dollar bonus checks.

    They will then learn to live on what they earn and not take advantage of the hard work and sacrifice the working public provides for them. If enough people at the bottom fall eventually the top will fall also.

    God helps those who help themselves.

    February 2, 2009 at 5:34 pm |
  4. Isabel Abreu

    The stimulus plan is not unanimous anywhere. Economists most conservative complain about format and the size of a tax cut; liberal economists wanted more spending on infrastructure, people on both sides shows that costs do not generate jobs or recover the economic, while others think the model of cutting taxes will not generate more consumption by Americans, but more savings.

    What are the consequences of bipartisanship?
    The problem isn't in Obama get a consensus that cross the partisan divisions in these dark times.
    But achieving some kind of bipartisan consensus requires discussions and concessions on both sides. Obama knows this, hence was the Congress, courting Republicans . The party of Obama didn't want to give up almost anything. The Republicans didn't like and voted against. Are minority, lost. But marked position. They did, finally, politics.

    February 2, 2009 at 2:44 pm |
  5. Heather,ca

    First they pass Tarp with no controls or regulations how our money is spent, and now they want to add ear marks that wont create jobs. Sounds like business as usual, not anything like the political promises they promised to get our votes. Not surprised what else is new?

    February 2, 2009 at 1:27 pm |
  6. xtina, chicago IL

    there are a lot of less important items in the stimulus, but military child care is not one of them. These are the men and women who defend our country, who have sacrificed more than most of us. When this stimulus gets adjusted, I hope mil. child care is still standing

    February 2, 2009 at 1:26 pm |
  7. Jim,California

    You want to see how this Nation will do just look to California Our Legislators put us in a 42 billion dollar hole & they'll be issuing I.O.U.'s
    but let us issue them the same for our taxes- there would be Hell to pay.

    February 2, 2009 at 12:41 pm |
  8. Mary V., Salt Lake City, UT

    Mr. Navarette, I just finished reading your article, and you bring up questionable history to make your point.

    First the $300 million for Childcare of Military bases, how is this "ridiculous"? Military families are struggling financially, while their spouses are at war...... fighting a war you supported, no doubt. How is it ridiculous to insure that children of Military families who are SACRIFICING for our Nation, get good childcare?

    Secondly, you totally do not get the importance of funding the prevention of STDs! Our healthcare system is in crisis, sir, and educating and preventing STDs can help save countless lives and countless .........billions! When people who are uneducated and poor get STDs...... guess who pays? We do. I'd rather educate people and PREVENT STDs!

    And lastly, $200 million for Birth control, well, here we go again! The points you made about Margaret Sanger, are unfair and misinform. Mrs. Sanger suffered a great deal at the hands of white-holier-than-thou-men, who did not want women to have the freedom to decide what was best for them!

    Being pro-life and a Democrat, I want women educated about birth control.... because then there will be fewer abortions! It IS hypocritical of you, a man, to deny women who can not afford to go to their own private GYN, access to birth control and education.

    Ridiculous? No. Please, folks, take time to READ the Stimulus Bill for yourselves, do not be sheep.

    February 2, 2009 at 12:08 pm |
  9. Michael "C" Lorton, Virginia

    Dana Crowe----Our help? In God we Trust---the rest pay cash.

    February 2, 2009 at 12:06 pm |
  10. Annie Kate

    If the House wrote the stimulus bill then how is it Obama's? I can see the House putting in a lot of its pet projects whether he wants them there or not. This would be a good time for line item veto – something I don't think the Congress has ever given the President. It would be instructive to see what Obama took out. The Democrats and the Republicans are going to have to work together to get the bill right and to ensure that it does create jobs and doesn't throw good money after bad. They need to get busy and do it soon too because we are all watching and needing the help. Congressional Representatives only have 2 year terms in the House so how they behave on this bill could be crucial to their re-election. They shouldn't count on us forgetting either – heck , even I can remember for that long.

    February 2, 2009 at 11:57 am |
  11. C.Greene

    I am getting frustrated! Does anyone see what the bulk of the republican party is trying to do? They are up to their old tricks again. It is called drag your feet any way you can to make it impossible for anything to work. and after it does notwork they come up with an answer which was proposed by the other party in the first place. Not only that, they have those who would call themselves friend while stabbing you in the back, they seem to think they should tell everyone how to vote and think etc. They think the american people have forgotten how they treated the democrats in the last administration. Well, I haven't forgotten!!

    February 2, 2009 at 11:46 am |
  12. Cindy

    There are a lot of ridiculous items being placed in this stimulus package. You'd think that with our economy in shambles and the fact that we really need this thing passed soon that they would have only the necessary things in their to get it out ASAP. But I guess this is the time for Obama to pay up for the help that he got to get elected.

    I hope that the Reps fight this every step of the way until all of the crap is taking out that won't do us any good as far as getting jobs going and all.


    February 2, 2009 at 11:32 am |
  13. Michael "C" Lorton, Virginia

    So military child care and prevention of socially transmitted disease is ridiculous-–ever served your country? Have an kids? If you have did both--then make a comment--otherwise your article is more ridiculous that the items attached to the bill......you get paid for this?

    February 2, 2009 at 11:26 am |
  14. Dana Crowe

    This package talks about redusing payroll taxes. Whats in it for the 11 million people who payed their taxes in 2008 and are now unemployed. Most of us that are excepting unemployment arent getting taxes taken out because its no enough to cover the bills as it is. Where is our help?

    February 2, 2009 at 11:21 am |