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Senate to vote on new rescue plan with added tax cut
The goal is to net at least 12 more House votes than the rescue proposal received Monday, when lawmakers rocked the political and financial worlds by rejecting it.
The gambit is certain to anger some conservative House Democrats, who object to tax cuts that are not offset with spending cuts. But Senate strategists assume it will gain more House votes than it will lose.
If so, Congress would be poised to pass landmark legislation giving the government billions of dollars to buy deeply discounted mortgage-backed securities that are choking off credit and roiling the markets.
The strategy is risky because some House members might see it as a high-handed move by senators. Senate passage of a bailout measure has seemed assured all along. The showdown is in the House, but now the Senate is trying to force the House's hand.
Sen. Charles Schumer, D-N.Y., called it "a brilliant move" that will "help pick up votes on both sides of the aisle."
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi's reaction was much cooler. "The Senate has made a decision about how to proceed and what can pass that body," the California Democrat said. "The Senate will vote tomorrow night, and the Congress will work its will."
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