Senators from Iowa split on stimulus bill - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

Senators from Iowa split on stimulus bill

WASHINGTON (KWWL) - Both U.S. Senators from Iowa weighed in on the passing of the stimulus bill in the Senate Tuesday.

"With this vote today, Americans will know that help is on the way," said Democratic Senator Tom Harkin.  "And in comes in the form of jobs that will be created or preserved as a result of this measure.  In empowering ordinary working Americans to take charge of their economic destiny, this package gives people in communities all across America the tools to help pull them out of this recession by their own initiative, their own hard work, their own grit and determination." 

"I oppose this bill because it is not bipartisan. That's a process issue, but I think it is a very important process issue," said Republican Senator Charles Grassley. "From the standpoint of the substance itself, there's not enough emphasis upon tax decreases to encourage investment in the private sector because investment creates jobs. And not just stimulus jobs which are short-term, but long-term jobs. The more jobs you create long-term the better off."

President Barack Obama's economic recovery plan has passed the Senate and is on its way to difficult House-Senate negotiations.

Just three Republicans helped pass the plan on a 61-37 vote and they're already signaling they'll play hardball to preserve more than $108 billion in spending cuts made last week in Senate dealmaking. Obama wants to restore cuts in funds for school construction jobs and help for cash-starved states.

Those cuts are among the major differences between the $819 billion House version of Obama's plan and a Senate bill costing $838 billion. Obama has warned of a deepening economic crisis if Congress fails to act. He wants a bill completed by the weekend.

Online Executive Producer Nate Leding

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