US lawmakers back to work bailout, eye Monday deadline

US lawmakers back to work bailout, eye Monday deadline
AFP
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First Published: Sat, Sep 27 2008. 01 11 AM IST
Updated: Sat, Sep 27 2008. 01 11 AM IST
Washington: US lawmakers vowed Friday that they were cracking ahead with a massive Wall Street bailout and hoped to get something in place before the markets reopen after the weekend.
“We’re going to get this done and stay in session as long as it takes to get it done,” Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid told a press conference, after a night of high drama and political turmoil.
Congress had been due to break Saturday for its traditional recess ahead of the 4 November elections so lawmakers could travel back to their states to campaign.
But Reid said Congress should be able to close a deal on the $700-billion bailout of the US financial sector before markets open on Monday.
“There’s no reason we can’t do that,” Reid said.
Republican Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell agreed that there had been progress and told reporters that House Republicans are also interested in being a part of the process.
“I think everybody is trying to go forward in good faith to meet pretty early deadlines to restore confidence in the markets and beyond that, the confidence of the American people that their financial system is going to be all right.”
New Hampshire Senator Judd Gregg, appointed the Republicans’ pointman on the issue, agreed: “We need to stay here until we’ve gotten something done.
“The progress that’s been made so far has been significant, in my opinion, but there’s still a lot of very knotty and difficult issues to deal with.”
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First Published: Sat, Sep 27 2008. 01 11 AM IST