Magazine article Policy & Practice

New Administration Pushes for Stimulus Plan: Congress Will Not Act until at Least February

Magazine article Policy & Practice

New Administration Pushes for Stimulus Plan: Congress Will Not Act until at Least February

Article excerpt

President Barack Obama and his transition team have pushed for a stimulus plan that could total more than $775 billion, with some estimates ranging as high as $1.3 trillion. In a speech on Jan. 8, Obama warned of double-digit unemployment, $1 trillion in lost economic activity, and a multi-year recession without swift and large-scale action. He proposed an aggressive injection of unprecedented sums of federal money into the economy, coupled with increased regulation to restore the flow of credit and to prevent another credit crisis from occurring in the future. Although the speech contained few specifics, Obama did pledge to computerize all medical records during his discussion of overhauling the health care system. He also said the package would include middle-class tax cuts and would contain no congressional earmarks. He also acknowledged that the country could face deficits in the trillions of dollars for years to come and that the economic situation could get worse before it improves.

Republicans and some conservative Democrats are wary that the stimulus package will expand and burden the federal government with entitlement programs that would require years of funding. …

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