House Democrats unveil stimulus plan
Share Now on:
TEXT OF STORY
KAI RYSSDAL: Alright, enough about the TARP. It’s a mere $700 billion, after all. Let’s start talking real money here. House Democrats unveiled their economic stimulus package today — $825 billion as it stands now. But it’s a safe bet to say it’s going to grow. After it was released, the guy who’s going to have to make the plan work, President-elect Barack Obama, called it a significant downpayment.
Marketplace’s Steve Henn has the details.
STEVE HENN: What does $825 billion buy these days? For starters, tax breaks for first-time homebuyers and parents and anyone making less than $75,000 a year. Then there are tax write-offs for businesses with big losses. And more than a half a trillion in new spending on health care, cops and new technologies.
CHARLES RANGEL: We gotta create jobs, not just for now, not temporary jobs, but for the future — and bridges and tunnels and rebuilding our schools.
That’s Charlie Rangel, the Democratic chairman of the House Ways and Means committee. He’s promising this package will create 3 to 4 million jobs in the next two years. That’s a lot of jobs, but it’s a lot of money out the door too.
RANGEL: It comes to $217,000 per job created. Now, keep in mind that the average worker only earns $40,000 a year.
Brian Riedl’s at the conservative Heritage Foundation.
Brian Riedl: This is one of the most expensive pieces of legislation in American history and it’s being rushed through with very little Congressional debate or analysis.
Just a year ago, $825 billion would have sounded like a fortune. These days not so much. But for the record it’s 50 percent more than what the U.S. has spent on the Iraq war to-date, and 10 times the cost of Hurricane Katrina. And this enormous price tag could go up. If senators protect the upper-middle class from tax hikes under the alternative minimum tax, the cost is likely to shoot over $900 billion.
In Washington I’m Steve Henn for Marketplace.
We’re here to help you navigate this changed world and economy.
Our mission at Marketplace is to raise the economic intelligence of the country. It’s a tough task, but it’s never been more important.
In the past year, we’ve seen record unemployment, stimulus bills, and reddit users influencing the stock market. Marketplace helps you understand it all, will fact-based, approachable, and unbiased reporting.
Generous support from listeners and readers is what powers our nonprofit news—and your donation today will help provide this essential service. For just $5/month, you can sustain independent journalism that keeps you and thousands of others informed.