Despite President Obama’s hysterical ‘Pass This Bill Now!’ and ‘No Delay’ admonitions repeated over and over, the urgency of the moment seems to be lost on some Democrats in the U.S. Senate, including Majority Leader Harry Reid.
As reported, in part, at the reference:
Democratic Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid said Republicans won’t support President Barack Obama’s jobs plan, but he still wants them to vote on the sweeping $450 billion economic recovery effort.
“We are going to have the Republicans belly up to the bar to turn down this plan,” Reid said during a virtual town hall meeting with supporters Wednesday.
Reid said he won’t immediately take up Obama’s plan because the Senate must tackle other issues first. He didn’t specify which bills would receive priority over Obama’s economic solution.
Reid has said he will put the bill on the legislative calendar but has declined to say when. He almost certainly will push the bill — which Mr. Obama urged Congress to pass “right now!” — until after his chamber’s recess at the end of the month; Mr. Reid has set votes on disaster aid, extensions for the Federal Aviation Administration and a short-term spending plan ahead of the jobs bill.
Part Of The Reason for the delay may be that some Senate Democrats still aren’t sold on the plan:
Democrats, as is their wont, are divided over their objections, which stem from Mr. Obama’s sinking popularity in polls, parochial concerns and the party’s chronic inability to unite around a legislative initiative, even in the face of Republican opposition.
Some are unhappy about the specific types of companies, particularly the oil industry, that would lose tax benefits. “I have said for months that I am not supporting a repeal of tax cuts for the oil industry unless there are other industries that contribute,” said Senator Mary L. Landrieu of Louisiana.
A small but vocal group dislikes the payroll tax cuts for employees and small businesses. “I have been very unequivocal,” said Representative Peter A. DeFazio, a Democrat from Oregon. “No more tax cuts.”
His voice rising to a near shriek, he added: “We have the economy that tax cuts give us. And it’s pretty pathetic, isn’t it? The president is in a box.”
There are also Democrats, some of them senators up for election in 2012, who oppose the bill simply for its mental connection to the stimulus bill, which laid at least part of the foundation for the Republican takeover of the U.S. House in 2010.
“I have serious questions about the level of spending that President Obama proposed,” said Senator Joe Manchin III, a Democrat from West Virginia, in a statement issued right after Mr. Obama spoke to a joint session of Congress last week.”
How in the hell can President Obama expect Republicans and the American people to take his “Plan” seriously when members of his own party are ignoring him?