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Upper Midwest Delegation Votes 6-2 As $700 Billion Financial Industry Bailout Sails Through Senate

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The United States Senate voted 74 to 25 Wednesday night, in support of a revised bill that would, in part, fund $700 billion in a ‘rescue’ of the financial industry.

The Upper Midwest delegation voted 6 to 2 in favor of the bill, with Democrats Russ Feingold and Tim Johnson being the region’s only dissenting members. Feingold and Johnson were two of only nine Democrats (along with Independent Bernie Sanders of Vermont) who voted against the legislation.

On Monday, in response to the House defeat of similar legislation, Feingold stated:

“(N)egotiators should offset the cost of the proposed bailout so that taxpayers don't get saddled with it. There are plenty of proposals out there that can be considered, including asking Wall Street to bear at least some of the cost. Second, negotiators should add meaningful provisions to help families facing foreclosure. This is more than just a matter of fairness - the housing crisis is the root cause of the credit market collapse, and unless we address it, any rescue package is far less likely to work. Finally, negotiators must address the deeply flawed regulatory structure that paved the way for this crisis.?

Eight-one percent of Democrats who voted (39 of 48) were in favor of the bill – along with Joe Lieberman (I-CT) – compared to just 69 percent of Republicans (34 of 49).

Of the 30 incumbents running for re-election this November, 10 voted against the measure, including 44 percent of Republicans (8 of 18): John Barrasso (R-WY), Thad Cochran (R-MS), Elizabeth Dole (R-NC), Michael Enzi (R-WY), Jim Inhofe (R-OK), Pat Roberts (R-KS), Jeff Sessions (R-AL), and Roger Wicker (R-MS).

Of the 12 Democrats running for re-election in 2008 only two voted ‘nay’: South Dakota’s Johnson and Mary Landrieu of Louisiana.

Voting Yes
Charles Grassley (R-IA)
Tom Harkin (D-IA)
Norm Coleman (R-MN)
Amy Klobuchar (DFL-MN)
John Thune (R-SD)
Herb Kohl (D-WI)

Voting No
Russ Feingold (D-WI)
Tim Johnson (D-SD)

Previous post: Election Profile: Iowa's 1st Congressional District (2008)
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