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Scott Jagow: Well, it’s back to the drawing board on the stimulus package. It failed in the Senate by one vote. John Dimsdale reports on what’s holding things up.
John Dimsdale: Senate Democrats want to add $40 billion to the package negotiated by House members and President Bush. Some of the extra money would boost unemployment benefits and home heating assistance for poor families.
The Economic Policy Institute’s Jared Bernstein says putting cash in the pockets of the poor and unemployed would give the economy a quick jolt:
Jared Bernstein: That will get you a bigger bang for the buck, because those folks by definition almost are income constrained. They’re more likely to go out and spend the money.
But Republicans successfully argued the additional stimulus is too costly, and Wall Street Journal editorial writer Stephen Moore fears the rebates will be too late to help the economy.
Stephen Moore: That’s been the traditional problem with these stimulus packages in the past. By the time the money gets out to be spent, we’re out of the recession, we’re already in the recovery phase of the business cycle.
Senate Republicans are proposing a compromise that adds rebate checks for veterans and Social Security recipients, but would not extend unemployment benefits.
In Washington, I’m John Dimsdale for Marketplace.