The House voted by a 385 to 35 margin to pass the economic stimulus package agreed to by President Bush and House leaders.
The package, estimated at $146 billion, provides tax rebates of up to $600 for individuals, $1,200 for couples, along with an additional $300 per child. Lower income workers who paid no income tax but earned at least $3,000 would receive $300 rebate checks.
The package is estimated to help 117 million Americans. The package also contains incentives to spur business investment in capital equipment, allowing companies to deduct more of the cost of equipment. And it raises loan limits for the Federal Housing Administration, Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae.
"I commend the House for quick bipartisan action today on an economic growth package that is simple, temporary, broad-based and effective," said Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson in a statement. "If enacted quickly, as I hope it will be, the House package will inject money into our economy in time to help create more than 500,000 jobs before the end of the year. I am confident that Senate leaders understand that speed and simplicity are key to getting a bipartisan agreement enacted. The time to act is now."
However, the package faces uncertain prospects in the Senate, where leaders hope to add extras such as extensions in unemployment benefits and tax rebates for senior citizens who depend on Social Security. The Senate version proposed by Senate Finance Committee Chairman Max Baucus, D-Mont., would provide rebate checks of $500 for individuals, $1,000 for couples filing jointly and $300 per child.
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