From the Wash Post:
President-elect Barack Obama and congressional Democrats have entered discussions over an economic stimulus package that could grow to include $850 billion in new spending and tax cuts over the next two years, a gigantic sum that some Democrats say could prove difficult to push rapidly through Congress.
A package of that size—which would include at least $100 billion for cash-strapped state governments and more than $350 billion for investments in infrastructure, alternative energy and other priorities—is a significant increase over the numbers previously contemplated by Democrats. It would exceed the $700 billion bailout of the U.S. financial system, as well as the annual budget for the Pentagon.
A dissenting voice from the past:
Concerns about the political viability of the package are compounded by fears that its economic effectiveness could be diluted. [Former Clinton administration budget director Alice] Rivlin said she would prefer quick approval of a much smaller package that contains only items that would rapidly push cash into the economy, such as aid to states and the poor and perhaps a payroll tax holiday. That could be followed, she said, by a larger spending package with investments thoughtfully crafted to achieve Obama's broader economic goals.
"Mass transit, the high-tech stuff, investment in health IT. Those are all good ideas. But they aren't stimulus," Rivlin said.
An incoming president whose party runs Congress who is giving everybody exactly what they asked for? Whoda thunk it?
Let's start the betting pool now to see exactly when Obama finally gets around to saying, "OK, we've gotten past the present emergency and we have to break the cycle of debt and stop spending like drunken Republicans sailors."