Petri Votes Against Stimulus Bill
The House of Representatives passed its massive stimulus bill Wednesday by a vote of 244 to 188. Rep. Tom Petri voted against the bill, and has released the following statement:
"I think we need a stimulus bill, but I voted against this one.
"If you look at the figures submitted by President Obama and his team to support the stimulus bill that was brought forward, you'll find that, according to their estimates, the proposed transportation spending in the bill, which is about seven percent of the total stimulus package, would create half of the jobs that we hope to get out of the stimulus.
"Since seven percent of the bill would provide vastly more bang for the buck than the other 93 percent, it seems to me that we ought to spend more on crumbling infrastructure and actually get something lasting for the spending, and less on the other things in the bill, if creating jobs is what we are really trying to do. And that's what we need to do to stabilize the economy.
"The majority of the stimulus bill is made up of money for programs of various sorts that are good, bad and indifferent. Some are worthy, some aren't. But they don't belong in a stimulus bill.
"The massive added spending that is contained in this bill will be with us for years to come, and we'll soon be confronted with votes for tax increases to stabilize the finances of our country as a result.
"It seems to me that we should be going through the normal committee and hearing process for this unnecessary part of the bill, and deciding whether this is something that is right or not, and if it's necessary, getting it right before passing it."