Leaders of the Senate and House of Representative agreed on a $789.5-billion stimulus package on late Wednesday evening,following some hectic and intensified negotiations,thus setting the stage for its Congressional passage in the next few days.
“The difference between the Senate and House versions we have resolved. The bills were really quite similar. I am pleased to announce that we have been able to bridge those differences,” Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid made the announcement at the Capitol Hill on Wednesday afternoon.
Obama can now hope to sign the American Economic Recovery and Reinvestment Act into law by President’s Day on February 16,a self-imposed deadline set by him.
He was quick to issue a statement as the leaders of the House and Senate agreed to reconcile the two different versions of the bill.
“I want to thank the Democrats and Republicans in the Congress who came together around a hard-fought compromise that will save or create more than 3.5 million jobs and get our economy back on track,” Obama said in a statement.
The country has lost as many as 3.6 million jobs since recession hit the US economy in December 2007. More than half of these job losses have been in the last three months.