According to Robert Gibbs in a just-concluded press conference, Obama is going to hold town halls in Elkhart Indiana and Ft. Myers Florida on Monday. Which appears to be an attempt to pick up the needed Senate votes for the stimulus bill — Dick Luger and Mel Martinez looking to be the most persuadable Republicans.
Rather than simply allow the Collins/Nelson confab to just hack away at the present bill by making it more appealing to conservatives, eliminating things like child nutrition so they can include more defense spending, it looks like Democratic leadership is going on the offensive — from the left.
It was surprising to hear Diane Feinstein say today that she wouldn’t vote for a bill that had too many tax cuts, which would not be effective stimulus. And Olympia Snowe says that Reid approached her to work with leadership to reduce the tax cut portion of the bill. It’s an interesting piece of gamesmanship in what’s looking like an all-out war to get this thing passed in some form that will be effective.
But it doesn’t appear that even if Harry Reid files for cloture today that anything will be resolved with a Sunday vote.
Meanwhile, Sirota says that according to a new Harris poll, 84% of Americans support "buy America" provisions in the stimulus bill. I wonder if they get any say in where their money goes.
Update: Reid evidently has his own plan to get to the magic $800 billion with tax cuts, developed in consultation with the White House. Good — those Lieberman/Collins nitwits were sucking all the oxygen out of the debate.