Stimulus Stalls in Senate

Posted September 26, 2008 at 1:33pm

Senate Democrats failed today to limit debate on a stimulus package because of a dispute over language to limit oil shale exploration.

Offered by Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) and Appropriations Chairman Robert Byrd (D-W.Va.)., the bill was touted as a boost for the economy by spending on infrastructure and extending unemployment benefits and food stamps. Efforts to cut off debate failed on a 52-42 vote.

Sen. Jim DeMint (S.C.) appealed to his GOP colleagues to oppose the measure because the bill would maintain the ban on oil shale development. DeMint tried to offer an unanimous consent request that would have expedited offshore drilling and expanded oil shale exploration, a move Democrats opposed.

“You should quit while you’re ahead,” Reid said while objecting to DeMint’s request.