President Obama on Tuesday will sign the stimulus bill, which passed without the support of a single House Republican and with only three votes from the GOP in the Senate. With battle lines that stark, lawmakers have tied their fates to that of the bill.

If the legislation succeeds, Democrats will take credit for stabilizing the economy and creating millions of new jobs. Republicans hope to hang a $787 billion albatross around their rivals’ necks if the plan fails.


If it has the desired effect of creating or saving up to 4 million jobs and kick-starting the economy, the package will be judged a smart move akin to President Bill Clinton’s economic plan that was hotly debated back in 1993. Clinton’s decision to raise taxes to balance the budget was seen as the foundation of the U.S. economic boom of the 1990s.

If it does not, opposition Republicans will be able to argue that Obama should give more consideration to their ideas, which focused on tax cuts. A lack of an economic rebound will provide fodder they’ll use against the Democrats in the 2010 mid-term elections.

Read more

Wait, before you go…

If you're reading this, you probably already know that non-profit, independent journalism is under threat worldwide. Independent news sites are overshadowed by larger heavily funded mainstream media that inundate us with hype and noise that barely scratch the surface.  We believe that our readers deserve to know the full story. Truthdig writers bravely dig beneath the headlines to give you thought-provoking, investigative reporting and analysis that tells you what’s really happening and who’s rolling up their sleeves to do something about it.

Like you, we believe a well-informed public that doesn’t have blind faith in the status quo can help change the world. Your contribution of as little as $5 monthly or $35 annually will make you a groundbreaking member and lays the foundation of our work.

Support Truthdig