US House narrowly defeats bailout law

September 30th, 2008 - 9:46 am ICT by Amrit Rashmisrisethi  

In a narrow vote, the US House last night (Thai time) voted at 228-205 to reject the most sweeping US government intervention into the American financial markets since the Great Depression in the US, refusing to grant the US Treasury Department the power to purchase up to $700 billion in the troubled assets that are at the heart of the U.S. financial crisis. US Treasury Secretary Vowed to continue effort saying, ‘this Is much too important to simply let fail’

(Agencies) The 228-205 vote amounted to a stinging rebuke to the Bush administration and Treasury Secretary Henry M. Paulson Jr., and was sure to sow massive anxiety in world markets.

Just 11 days ago, Paulson urged US congressional leaders to quickly approve the bailout. He warned that inaction would lead to a seizure of credit markets and a virtual halt to the lending that allows Americans to acquire mortgages and other types of loans.

Paulson said after a meeting with President Bush at the White House that he was “very disappointed” in today’s vote but that he was committed to working out a solution with Congress.

“We’ve got much work to do, and this is much too important to simply let fail,” he said. “We need to put something back together that works.” He said the rescue plan he put forward “is a plan that works.”

Bush also expressed disappointment. “We’ll be working with . . . leaders of Congress on the way forward,” he said. “Our strategy is to continue to address this economic situation head on.”

The vote also sparked recriminations on the presidential campaign trail, with just 36 days left until the Nov. 4 election.

Source : National News Bureau, Public Relations Department of Thailand

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