Obama demands speed on stimulus
President Barack Obama pounded Republicans Saturday for policies that fueled the economic crisis, while welcoming a Senate deal on his stimulus bill that ideologically split lawmakers hope to finish by mid-month, Reuters reported.
Obama said quick action on the package was imperative to avoid catastrophe and praised the group of moderate senators from both political parties for coming up with a compromise.
Senate Democrats agreed late Friday to trim spending proposals and support tax cuts in a roughly $800 billion bill. They rolled back an earlier $937 billion proposal by culling what critics, mostly Republicans, called billions of dollars in unwarranted spending.
Nancy Pelosi, speaker of the House of Representatives, predicted there would be a finished product by February 16. A Senate vote is scheduled for Tuesday, one day after Obama gives his first full news conference as president.
"Democrats and Republicans came together in the Senate and responded appropriately to the urgency this moment demands," Obama said in his weekly radio address.
"In the midst of our greatest economic crisis since the Great Depression, the American people were hoping that Congress would begin to confront the great challenges we face. That was, after all, what last November's election was all about."