Americans sceptical over bailout bill

The U.S. House of Representatives are to discuss a new version of a $US 700 billion plan to rescue America's financial sector after the Senate backed the bill on Thursday. The previous version was rejected by the House, due to concerns about both the cont

On Thursday the House Republicans accused their fellow representatives of trying to push through several expensive projects under the guise of the bailout. Ohio representative Steve LaTourette called it ‘Christmas in October’.

The House speaker Nancy Pelosi agreed the bill was far from perfect, but said its passing would still be better than doing nothing. “Time is of the essence. If we had more time, I think we could have written a better bill,” she admitted.

Protesters outside the Capitol building don’t think opening up the state coffers is a good idea. They say the Bush administration is asking not just for money but also the liberty to spend it without controls.

Jeffrey McNeil has been homeless for several years but he doesn't panhandle. Instead, he's working the streets, making 75 cents from each paper he sells. He is also angry with Wall Street for gambling with bad loans, and he is definitely not in favour of the bailout. However, the financial crisis is a chance to make an extra buck for Jeffrey. Comparing Wall Street to panhandlers seems to be striking a chord with passers-by. He says it helps him to sell more papers than ever before.

While recent polls show two-thirds of Americans are angry about the rescue plan, even its strongest opponents believe the bill will pass through the House. If so, it will be the biggest federal intervention in the American economy since the Great Depression.

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