House Democrats balking on Porkulus?

posted at 5:05 pm on February 11, 2009 by Ed Morrissey

What if you threw a Porkulus meeting and no one came?  Nancy Pelosi and Steny Hoyer just found out:

Senators negotiating a final compromise economic stimulus package said the House of Representatives and Senate agreed Wednesday on a $789.5 billion package that scales back tax breaks for new car and home buyers while restoring some cuts in state education aid and health care.

But after the announcement, a joint conference committee meeting scheduled for 3 p.m. was postponed after House Democrats did not show up.

Senators said they still expected an agreement later Wednesday, and it was unclear that the agreement had run into difficulties. Senate staff members said the delay was merely to allow House members who had been expected to oppose some aspects of the Senate bill to express their feelings privately.

According to Senators Ben Nelson, D-Neb., and Susan Collins, R-Maine, key moderates who helped craft the agreement, the new bill includes $54 billion for education, less than $79 billion House members had wanted and more than the $39 billion senators approved.

The new bill has no money for school construction, increases to $90 billion the amount of money that would be sent to states to help pay Medicaid costs, and also increases to $49.6 billion the amount of money that would be devoted to infrastructure projects.

Democrats have not been totally enamored of the bill, but for differing reasons.  Some complain that it relies too heavily on government spending, while others object to the tax cuts.  However, only eleven of them balked at supporting the original plan, HR1, when it came to the floor last week, and I doubt that they’ll get even that many breaking ranks this time.

The conferees deliberately trimmed off enough to get the bill under $800 billion in an attempt to woo Republicans.  It might work, but it shouldn’t.  The cuts didn’t come in government spending but in eliminating tax cuts, including potentially stimulating breaks designed to get people to buy houses and cars.  It makes a bad bill even worse, and emphasizes the pork in Porkulus.

Will the conference version create a rebellion or a split?  Almost certainly not.  Pelosi and Hoyer won’t allow it.  Expect plenty of pressure to come down on House Democrats to present a united front.  They don’t want to give Republicans any reason to remain firm in their opposition.  They can pass the bill without the GOP, at least in the House, but they want even a thin fig leaf of bipartisanship when this winds up making matters worse.  Getting stood up at a party may not be the best start, but Hoyer and Pelosi know how to twist enough arms to end any doubt about the eventual outcome.


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According to Senators Ben Nelson, D-Neb., and Susan Collins, R-Maine, key moderates who helped craft the agreement, the new bill includes $54 billion for education, less than $79 billion House members had wanted and more than the $39 billion senators approved.

It’s not stuff like this that matters. Is that backdoor attempt at socialized medicine still part of the package? What about the waterslide in Vegas? The sodding of the National Mall?

We the people need to find out the details NOW and find out what kind of treason the Democrats along with the three GOP traitors have crafted.

highhopes on February 11, 2009 at 5:09 PM

was postponed after House Democrats did not show up.

Bwahaha!

amerpundit on February 11, 2009 at 5:09 PM

the new bill includes $54 billion for education, less than $79 billion House members had wanted and more than the $39 billion senators approved.

Big bucks for education in a short-term economy stimulus bill? Because it’s really a payback bill.

jgapinoy on February 11, 2009 at 5:09 PM

I think we, the people, are having an impact.

Skywise on February 11, 2009 at 5:09 PM

I’m not sure I care anymore. Our voices aren’t heard, and our will is rejected.

I think I understand now what Obama meant we he said we’re bitter, and cling to guns and religion. Besides our families, it’s all we have left. The government is our enemy.

darwin on February 11, 2009 at 5:10 PM

Oh just pass the damn thing. Ive been bending over all week.

Chuck Schick on February 11, 2009 at 5:10 PM

Hey! At least one person came:

http://www.businessandmedia.org/articles/2009/20090211135318.aspx

bloggless on February 11, 2009 at 5:10 PM

The eventual outcome is that armed confrontation of some sort will happen somewhere. Lives are going to be ruined because of these demorat trash, careers demolished, wealth destroyed; the victims are going to look for scalps.

Bishop on February 11, 2009 at 5:11 PM

Evidently, Charles Schumer, the American people DO care about pork! They care so much that their representatives are holding out for MORE.

Christien on February 11, 2009 at 5:13 PM

Reminds me of that song: I hear you knockin’, but you can’t come in.
http://www.businessandmedia.org/articles/2009/20090211135318.aspx

bloggless on February 11, 2009 at 5:14 PM

not that showing up would have mattered… this is pelosi’s slow moving train wreck… everyone in DC understands that fact… once the cameras are off, no reason to waste their time listening to an old gas bag gloat

gatorboy on February 11, 2009 at 5:18 PM

House Dems: If we can get this obscenely ridiculous bill passed, then we can get anything passed. Back to the drawing board, boys, we’re adding extras zeroes to every item!

Christien on February 11, 2009 at 5:20 PM

Besides our families, it’s all we have left. The government is our enemy.

darwin on February 11, 2009 at 5:10 PM

revolution perhaps? the thought has been increasingly crossing my mind. I’d rather die a Freeman than live a life enslaved to the government and the cronies who suckle the government tit.

theguardianii on February 11, 2009 at 5:20 PM

Hey! At least one person came:

http://www.businessandmedia.org/articles/2009/20090211135318.aspx

bloggless on February 11, 2009 at 5:10 PM

Tom Price is a patriot… can’t say the same about the two knucklehead “gop” senators from GA

gatorboy on February 11, 2009 at 5:21 PM

R’s keep wanting to fight on the Dems turf. That’s always a losing strategy. The Dems have the home field advantage.

I heard Steele vs. Kaine. Kaine was better. How horrible is this that Steele didn’t attack Kaine for the totally indefensible stuff in the bill…like the healthcare stuff.

You need to get these guys on the defensive, drop the polite McCain style. These guys are not our friends, and not the friends of the people.

The R’s need to learn to grab the frame back from the Left.

r keller on February 11, 2009 at 5:21 PM

Man, you got my hopes up with the headline, only to crush my spirits with the article…I can’t take much more. I am so mad I could cry. My Senators/Rep are voting against it. I guess I am down to pleading with Michael Steele and sending pork rinds to Schumer – not that any of it matters. I have stuck with this whole stock market with the kids’ 529 plans, but we are even stopping payments into that. We just keep losing money. I wish I could say “Just get it over with already!!” but I don’t know if this will ever end!

XWing5 on February 11, 2009 at 5:23 PM

r keller on February 11, 2009 at 5:21 PM

Steele isn’t a fiscal con; so how can he debate the bad stuff in a spending bill, when he probably supports some of it?

lorien1973 on February 11, 2009 at 5:24 PM

revolution perhaps? the thought has been increasingly crossing my mind. I’d rather die a Freeman than live a life enslaved to the government and the cronies who suckle the government tit.

I wonder how many stimulus projects will be blown up after completion?

izoneguy on February 11, 2009 at 5:25 PM

Want some irony? Several Democrats not supporting the bill, and leaving our three Republicans out to dry…
That is what basically is happening, the dems aren’t happy and they are hammering out the details, while our three little stooges can’t wait to sign whatever is put in front of them.
They remind me of the scene from Blazing Saddles, and Mel is signing whatever is put in front of him.
Or this scene…
I have a feeling Mel Brooks isn’t too far off from his parody.

right2bright on February 11, 2009 at 5:27 PM

Suppose they called a vote, and no one shows.

bryan2369 on February 11, 2009 at 5:28 PM

I think it’s too much for us to hope that house democrats will do the right thing and stop this bill.

We don’t live in fantasy land.

t.ferg on February 11, 2009 at 5:29 PM

Shamefully show up in front of cameras with Pelosi and this socialist porkfest OR go to a mouse roast………

Rovin on February 11, 2009 at 5:30 PM

It would be some sweet justice if the GOP were secretly wooing just enough demorats back from the brink to leave the bill and the three GOP clods floundering like landed Walleyes.

I would pay good money to see Spectre contorting himself into a pretzel as he tries to rejoin the GOP resistance.

Bishop on February 11, 2009 at 5:31 PM

right2bright on February 11, 2009 at 5:27 PM

How about some Marx Brothers?
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=C-zR2pM_S5U

bryan2369 on February 11, 2009 at 5:31 PM

increases to $90 billion the amount of money that would be sent to states to help pay Medicaid costs

This is an example of what does the language say that worries me most. I hear that this Medicaid is to be given to people who the States do not deem eligible for Medicaid at present. And if they take it they have to change their rules and they don’t know if they can go back later to their old rules after the money runs out. Same thing for the money in unemployment benefits. It gives money to those not currently eligible but they have to change their rules to get it .. but don’t know if they can go back. It’s going to kill States that are required to balance their budgets to have to raise their taxes when this money is gone in order to provide the mandated funds if they can’t revert back to their old rules.

Texas Gal on February 11, 2009 at 5:32 PM

It would be some sweet justice if the GOP were secretly wooing just enough demorats back from the brink to leave the bill and the three GOP clods floundering like landed Walleyes.

Bishop on February 11, 2009 at 5:31 PM
That would indeed be awesome.

Vashta.Nerada on February 11, 2009 at 5:32 PM

The cuts didn’t come in government spending but in eliminating tax cuts

I still don’t get how tax cuts (i.e. not taking our money away in the first place) can be counted as a “cost” to government.

Tax rebates might “cost” the government, but not tax cuts.

UltimateBob on February 11, 2009 at 5:34 PM

It’s going to kill States that are required to balance their budgets to have to raise their taxes when this money is gone in order to provide the mandated funds if they can’t revert back to their old rules.

Texas Gal on February 11, 2009 at 5:32 PM

That’s the whole idea. Democrats demand to raise taxes, and if they can’t do it at the federal level because the voters won’t let them, they will do it somewhere else. Why do you think they were complaining about defecits for so many years? Certainly not because of interest on the debt. Republicans cut taxes, democrats refuse to cut spending – it’s a game of chicken. At some point, one will have to lose. Our job is to make sure that the dems lose, either at the ballot box or the tax revolt.

Vashta.Nerada on February 11, 2009 at 5:36 PM

UltimateBob on February 11, 2009 at 5:34 PM

once you accept the idea that it’s their money; then you’ll understand.

lorien1973 on February 11, 2009 at 5:38 PM

All that cash down the toilet, and it’s still not enough for Nanny Nancy and The Gimmie Gimmies.

Like the old MTV slogan (And I mean REALLY old, back when they showed nothing but music videos old): “Too much is NEVER enough!”

The ecconomy’s about to go Steve Austin (“…an ecconomy barely alive…”) and unfortunately for the rest of us these fatheads DON’T have the technology and CAN’T rebuild it!

I wonder if Canada’s hiring…

SuperCool on February 11, 2009 at 5:38 PM

It’s going to kill States that are required to balance their budgets to have to raise their taxes when this money is gone in order to provide the mandated funds if they can’t revert back to their old rules.

Texas Gal on February 11, 2009 at 5:32 PM

This is all part of the GRAND PLAN to force the states to become totally dependent on the central (formally Federal) government. Once the dependency is in place, policy directives must be followed or the states are threatened with being cut off from the money.

Rovin on February 11, 2009 at 5:41 PM

Texas Gal on February 11, 2009 at 5:32 PM

Isn’t that a cute trick? Create dependency for a few years, construct a demographic who will raise hell if funding is cut and force cities and states to either raise taxes or beg the feds for more money….which will require raising taxes.

Economic enslavement as more and more people are given their freebies and won’t want to give them up.

Bishop on February 11, 2009 at 5:41 PM

Here are a few audio clips of Oboomba’s responses to democrats and republican’s that are opposing this pork parade :

http://www.aprilwinchell.com/wp-content/cache/supercache/www.aprilwinchell.com/2009/02/05/barack-obama-is-tired-of-your-motherfucking-shit/index.html

DeweyWins on February 11, 2009 at 5:42 PM

How about some Marx Brothers?

Duck Soup: “If you thought the country was in bad shape before, just wait ’til I get through with it!”

Kristopher on February 11, 2009 at 5:45 PM

Since few have mentioned the health care provisions, I guess it’s a done deal? Politicans are a bunch of slimeballs.

Cindy Munford on February 11, 2009 at 5:48 PM

Like many others in this country, both my wife and I are unemployed. We’ll likely lose our house, the credit we have will be ruined and yet these weasely, incorrigibly corrupt, degenerate and perverted Princes (or in Barney’s case Princess) ‘Representatives’ (*spit) blithely pass a spending debt my great-grandchildren won’t be able to pay down. They do so knowing The One will ensure no majority Republican district will remain after the 2010 census. Their seats are secure to pass on to their heirs for all eternity.

I wonder what the tin-plated gods demons and familiars of The Harpy Harridan Herself lurking on Capital Hill would say if the next election cycle no one came to vote. Better yet, from what I’ve read so far, they should wear full body armor when campaigning.

SeniorD on February 11, 2009 at 5:50 PM

Economic enslavement as more and more people are given their freebies and won’t want to give them up.

Bishop on February 11, 2009 at 5:41 PM

It was called the “Carter Principal” Bishop.

Rovin on February 11, 2009 at 5:50 PM

revolution perhaps? the thought has been increasingly crossing my mind. I’d rather die a Freeman than live a life enslaved to the government and the cronies who suckle the government tit.

theguardianii on February 11, 2009 at 5:20 PM

It’s insane that the thought even crosses my mind … but that’s an indication of how frustrated and fearful I’ve become of government and democrats in particular.

darwin on February 11, 2009 at 5:51 PM

SeniorD on February 11, 2009 at 5:50 PM

Just a week ago I was thinking my business was going to be good, but now I don’t know. There is so much hidden junk in this billshat that I could get blindsided.

I have young guys working for me and it would be bad to have to lay them off, but I have a sinking feeling about things.

Bishop on February 11, 2009 at 5:54 PM

It was called the “Carter Principal” Bishop.
Rovin on February 11, 2009 at 5:50 PM

It’s called something else now, though stating it precisely would get me banned.

Bishop on February 11, 2009 at 5:55 PM

It’s insane that the thought even crosses my mind … but that’s an indication of how frustrated and fearful I’ve become of government and democrats in particular.

darwin on February 11, 2009 at 5:51 PM

I feel the same way. I’m just surprised it comes as much as it has as of late. After reading several books and original works on the founding of our nation I feel i truly understand the quote about the tree of liberty and the blood of patriots and tyrants.
Hell we should count ourselves lucky Jefferson thought that revolution should come every forty years.
It will be a tough decision if it comes to that but I think I’d be willing if it meant the freedom of my children and my children’s children and so on and on.

theguardianii on February 11, 2009 at 5:59 PM

I wonder how many stimulus projects will be blown up after completion?

izoneguy on February 11, 2009 at 5:25 PM

one has to wonder if they will ever be completed or even started. These are pork dollars that will never be spent for that which they are allocated.

theguardianii on February 11, 2009 at 6:01 PM

$54 billion for education, less than $79 billion House members had wanted and more than the $39 billion senators approved.

Okay, so that’s a cool $59B for the teachers’ union, since not a dime of that money goes to school construction.

…increases to $49.6 billion the amount of money that would be devoted to infrastructure projects

Just shy of $50B to every construction-related union you can think of.

What? Nothing for the UAW? The SEUI? Somewhere in this boondoggle there must be multi-billion dollar payoffs for the unions who helped put these clowns into office.

redfoxbluestate on February 11, 2009 at 6:03 PM

What about the expansive declaration of national park areas that result in restriction of gun carrying…

….this is nothing short of back-door socialism….

ladyingray on February 11, 2009 at 6:32 PM

The eventual outcome is that armed confrontation of some sort will happen somewhere. Lives are going to be ruined because of these Wall Street trash, careers demolished, wealth destroyed; the victims are going to look for scalps.

Bishop on February 11, 2009 at 5:11 PM

FIFY.

sethstorm on February 11, 2009 at 6:57 PM

It’s going to be tough two years but the house republicans have shown some hope that a 1994 typr revolution will come again.

P.S. when haven’t republican senators been turncoats? Seriously, I can’t think of anytime….ever.

jukin on February 11, 2009 at 7:00 PM

Give it 6 months. Obama will be exposed for what he is: An empty suit that gives great speech. Pelosi will be exposed for what she is: An over-paid political hag who bankrupted her state and then tried to do the same with our country. Bawney Fwank: Could and DID pass as a metard on the National stage. Reid: A stone cold, ugly, angry man that couldn’t get laid so he f’d the people instead. Geithner: The tax cheat and a rotten egg that sunk the stock market. And last but not least, Daschle the Rascal who not only wrote a book on how to sneak legislation into financial bills, but had the stones to document a “how to” in his book.

It’s coming down to “We the People”, the enforcement of Our Constitution and a revitalization of concerned Americans. With second amendment rights.

Barack Hussein Obama followed a man who for 20 (twenty) years preached God Damn America.

Well, Barack almost God Damned America. It’s up to We the People to push back.

Key West Reader on February 11, 2009 at 7:03 PM

The cuts didn’t come in government spending but in eliminating tax cuts,

Eliminating tax cuts – meaning that the government will keep more of our money – lowers the cost of a spending bill?

The government believes that letting us keep our own money is actually a government spending program? In other words, all of our money (property) belongs to the government and it is they who decide how much we are allocated to keep.

Golly.

SouthernRoots on February 11, 2009 at 7:05 PM

Key West Reader on February 11, 2009 at 7:03 PM

Tax issues aside, I’ll take someone like Geithner who struck actual fear into the Chinese. Not your every day capitulation, but fear.

Unfortunately the GOP is out of those kind of firebrands.

sethstorm on February 11, 2009 at 7:09 PM

This, and this is what the cut-and-run conservatives gave us.

Still proud to be an American?

DannoJyd on February 11, 2009 at 7:12 PM

Tax issues aside, I’ll take someone like Geithner who struck actual fear into the Chinese. Not your every day capitulation, but fear.

Unfortunately the GOP is out of those kind of firebrands.

sethstorm on February 11, 2009 at 7:09 PM

Links? Sources?

Thanks very much

Key West Reader on February 11, 2009 at 7:16 PM

The eventual outcome is that armed confrontation of some sort will happen somewhere. Lives are going to be ruined because of these demorat trash, careers demolished, wealth destroyed; the victims are going to look for scalps.

Bishop on February 11, 2009 at 5:11 PM

It will happen in Boston, New York, Providence, Baton Rouge, Chicago(maybe), Miami, Denver, Phoenix, You Get the idea…

Viper1 on February 11, 2009 at 7:47 PM

Is that backdoor attempt at socialized medicine still part of the package?

You bet your grandchildren’s legacy it is:

http://www.bloomberg.com/apps/news?pid=20601039&refer=columnist_mccaughey&sid=aLzfDxfbwhzs

Paul_in_NJ on February 11, 2009 at 8:22 PM

This, and this is what the cut-and-run conservatives gave us.

You link to Kos and expect anyone right of Lenin to believe his take? Get a grip!

Still proud to be an American?

Unlike Michelle Obama, and the rest of you who are only American when their candidate wins, we never stopped being proud.

Paul_in_NJ on February 11, 2009 at 8:28 PM

The government believes that letting us keep our own money is actually a government spending program? In other words, all of our money (property) belongs to the government and it is they who decide how much we are allocated to keep.

Now you’re getting it. And we’re all gonna get it, good and hard.

Paul_in_NJ on February 11, 2009 at 8:29 PM

I expect all the Democrats in the House to cave to Her Majesty Pelosi. She swings a mean ‘pay and owe’ sheet. Oh, did I mention that she’s completely bipartisan? Hahahahahaha!

GarandFan on February 11, 2009 at 9:21 PM

the liberals have too much invested into this
Disgrace..

I am sorry but there is no way they will let this fail..
I only hope the republicans got the message and actually have some balls left to stand up to the empty suit called obama..

jcila on February 11, 2009 at 9:43 PM

Passage of this bill will mean the end of the America we all grew up in.

Its truly sad that so many people, and particularly conservatives, do not see this.

2010 will be to too late to reverse the poison pill of nationalized health care buried deep within this fraudulent bill, and by 2012, there won’t be anything left to save, anyway.

-Dave

Dave R. on February 12, 2009 at 1:07 AM

If I were a Dem House member I would be utterly ashamed at the thought that I was expected to acquiesce to that nasty little gargoyle from San Francisco.
I’m sorry, did I just mention Democrat and shame in the same sentence? What the hell was I thinking??!

SKYFOX on February 12, 2009 at 7:48 AM