It took two voting sessions, but the House of Representatives has approved the costly mortgage bailout bill with a resounding majority.
The vote was won by a count of 263-171, and now awaits a signature from President Bush before becoming law.
The House had originally knocked the bill down by a vote of 228 to 205, ravaging world markets and sending the Dow down 777.68 points, its largest single-day point loss.
But late Wednesday, the Senate approved the bill by a hefty margin of 74 to 25, with both presidential hopefuls casting “aye” votes, prompting the House to reconsider its earlier decision.
The bill now stands at 451 pages, up from just 3 when it was originally drafted as a pure mortgage bailout initiative.
The so-called “Emergency Economic Stabilization Act of 2008” (EESA), or H.R. 1424, now includes a ton of measures not found in the original bill, including health care provisions, a boost to the FDIC limit, tax breaks, and more.
Interestingly, the Dow began to plummet after the news, and is now up less than 50 points after having been up several hundred points earlier in the session.
Of course the bill isn’t a silver bullet, and will certainly take time to make an impact, if it succeeds at all.
President Bush plans to sign the bill before he leaves Washington for his Texas retreat later today.