House Republicans Still Not On Board

A spokesman for House Minority Leader John Boehner, R-Ohio, cautions that House Republicans have not signed on to anything.

Spokesman Kevin Smith said this includes Rep. Spencer Bachus, the ranking Republican on the House Financial Services Committee, who spoke to the press after this morning's negotiation over the Wall Street bailout bill.

After the meeting, Bachus told reporters, "One thing that I'm encouraged by is something that Sen. (Jack) Reed and I have worked on for taxpayer protection, to see that the taxpayer and the Treasury is reimbursed for their expenditures. And I think that was an important step that we all took.  And we're committed to the tax money -- the taxpayer being protected. There was progress today.  And I felt like the discussions were very open.  And we're all committed to a successful and positive conclusion."

Bachus was the only House Republican at the meeting. Three Senate Republicans were in attendance. Asked if his boss had signed on to the plan, Bachus's spokesman said, "this is above my pay grade," and referred a reporter to the House Financial Service Committee staff.

Boehner issued a statement this afternoon, saying, "I am encouraged by the bipartisan progress being made toward an economic package that protects the interests of families, seniors, small businesses, and all taxpayers.  However, House Republicans have not agreed to any plan at this point.  We owe it to all those with a stake in this process to continue our discussions until we arrive at an agreement that is acceptable on both sides of the aisle -- and more importantly, one that serves the interests of American taxpayers.  With that in mind, I look forward to joining my colleagues, President Bush, Sen. McCain, and Sen. Obama at the White House later today to take the next critical steps on a rescue package."

- jpt

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