Small-business financing: Members passed, 410-4, a bill to extend several Small Business Administration loan and grant programs while awaiting Senate action on a House-passed bill that would upgrade and reauthorize those programs. A yes vote was to pass HR 4508.
Frank LoBiondo, R-2nd: YES
John Adler, D-3rd: YES
Bernanke confirmation: Senators confirmed, 70-30, Ben S. Bernanke, 56, for a second four-year term as chairman of the Federal Reserve System board of governors. His first term expired Jan. 31. A yes vote was to confirm Bernanke over arguments that his policies helped cause a recession.
Robert Menendez, D: YES
Frank Lautenberg, D: YES
National debt limit: Senators voted, 60-39, to raise the national debt limit by $1.9 trillion to $14.29 trillion. Doing so would extend Treasury borrowing authority until late 2010 or early 2011, at which time Congress would vote again on raising the debt ceiling. A yes vote was to pass HJ Res 45.
'Pay as you go': Senators passed, 60-40, a rule under which tax cuts or entitlement spending hikes must be offset. If they are not offset, supermajority votes are needed to approve them. Because the House has passed "pay as you go," the rule is likely to be signed into law. A yes vote was to enact pay-go. (HJ Res 45)
Spending caps: The Senate failed, 56-44, to get 60 votes to put spending caps on the 40 percent of the federal budget that is discretionary spending. Under the plan, supermajority votes would be needed to waive the caps in emergencies. A yes vote backed the proposal. (HJ Res 45)
Deficit reduction: Senators failed, 53-46, to get 60 votes needed to establish an 18-member panel that would draft a deficit-reduction plan. Congress then would accept or reject the plan in up-or-down votes with amendments barred. A yes vote was to establish the commission. (HJ Res 45)
Source: Roll Call Report Syndicate