Thursday, February 05, 2009

Senate Adds Homebuyer Tax Credit to Stimulus Bill

Last night the United States Senate added yet another revision to Obama’s massive stimulus package. To help gain bi-partisan support, Democratic leaders have listened to conservative experts and added new credits for taxpayers who purchase a home in 2009. The New York Times posted an article this morning discussing the revisions, check out a section of the article below.

The Senate on Wednesday voted to expand the economic stimulus package with a tax credit for homebuyers of up to $15,000, a provision championed by Republicans as addressing a root cause of the recession.

The vote to add the tax credit, at a cost of about $18.5 billion, came as Senate leaders seemed to be nearing completion of negotiations. The majority leader, Senator Harry Reid of Nevada, suggested that a final vote on the stimulus plan could come on Thursday.

Moderate lawmakers in both parties are pushing to reduce the overall cost of the measure and to focus it more tightly on provisions that will quickly spur spending and create jobs. The vote came as President Obama met with centrist lawmakers to address concerns about the package.

Mr. Obama, while expressing willingness to compromise, also issued a warning to some Republican critics who have said they will press for major changes to the bill, including the removal of many spending programs in favor of wider tax cuts.

“I’ve heard criticisms of this plan that echo the very same failed theories that helped lead us into this crisis, the notion that tax cuts alone will solve all our problems, that we can ignore the fundamental challenges like energy independence and the high cost of health care and still expect our economy and our country to thrive,” he said.

“I reject that theory,” Mr. Obama continued, “and so did the American people when they went to the polls in November and voted resoundingly for change. So I urge members of Congress to act without delay.”

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