Congress passes Obama budget

No Republicans signed on, but both houses voted in favor of the $3.4 trillion plan anyway.

Published April 29, 2009 10:25PM (EDT)

By now, it's become a pattern: Another large piece of legislation passes Congress without the support of a single Republican. This time, it was President Obama's $3.4 trillion budget, which both the House and Senate approved in its final form on Wednesday.

The House was first to weigh in; it passed the budget by a vote of 234-190. 15 Democrats, for the most part the kind of Blue Dogs in rural and potentially vulnerable districts who usually hesitate to back their party too closely, jumped ship and voted against. Five Democrats and three Republicans didn't vote at all.

In the Senate, the vote was somewhat closer, but supporters still managed to come out with a comfortable margin of victory. 53 senators voted in favor of the budget, while 43 voted against. Sens. Evan Bayh, Robert Byrd and Ben Nelson were the Democrats who voted against. In that, they were joined by their new comrade, Pennsylvania Sen. Arlen Specter, who's still listed on the Senate Web site as a Republican despite the announcement of his party switch yesterday.

By Alex Koppelman

Alex Koppelman is a staff writer for Salon.

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