The House came back into emergency session and passed the state aid bill, but not without a ton of carping by Republicans about how this is just another "bailout" for the states, all the while still demanding that the Bush tax cuts for the rich stay in place, which are not paid for and will add to that deficit they keep wailing about.
This afternoon, the House, reconvened for a special emergency vote, passed a $26.1 billion bill providing aid to cash-strapped state governments. The bill provides $16.1 billion in Medicaid funding and $10 billion to help states keep teachers on the payroll.
The Senate passed the deficit-neutral bill last week, 61 to 39. The vote came down on party lines, save for Maine Republicans Olympia Snowe and Susan Collins. After the Senate passed the package, Rep. Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.), the Speaker of the House, called members back from their home districts for a special vote on the bill. More than 400 House members returned, and Democrats passed a rule on the measure, 229 to 173. The bill passed 247 to 161, mostly on party lines. Republican Reps. Anh “Joseph” Cao (La.) and Mike Castle (Del.) voted for the bill; Democratic Reps. Gene Taylor (Miss.), Bobby Bright (Ala.) and Jim Cooper (Tenn.) voted no. Read on...
Rachel did a really great segment yesterday on why this money is so badly needed.