Why Was The AMT Fix Thrown Into The Stimulus Package?

If Ben Nelson really wanted to "trim the fat, fr[y] the bacon and milk[] the sacred cows," why didn't he remove the alternative Minimum Tax "fix" from the stimulus package? Let's be clear - the Senate stimulus bill costs MORE than the House bill and does much less to stimulate job creation. As a NYTimes editorial points out:

Nearly $70 billion of the Senate bill is spent on providing a one-year reprieve from the alternative minimum tax. It . . . is a measure that passes easily each year on its own. A fair deal would be to take A.M.T. relief out of the package contingent on a promise from Mr. Obama to champion a separate relief bill as soon as possible.

The first Media person to ask why the non-stimulative AMT fix is in the stimulus package will win respect as a competent journalist. UPDATE - Even Fred Hiatt's WaPo agrees:

[S]ince AMT relief was probably already factored into household plans for this year anyway, it's hard to see how this belongs in an economic stimulus bill.

Speaking for me only

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  • Display: Sort:
    trim the fat, fry the bacon, (5.00 / 1) (#1)
    by lilburro on Tue Feb 10, 2009 at 09:05:28 AM EST
    slice the jugular....

    Charles Shumer is pointing out (5.00 / 2) (#4)
    by oculus on Tue Feb 10, 2009 at 09:48:26 AM EST
    on Senate floor (C-Span), including an old-fashioned board on easel, the two most expensive additions to the bill were by Republicans who then voted against the bill:  homebuyer's tax crediet and AMT "patch."

    I would think.... (none / 0) (#2)
    by Jerrymcl89 on Tue Feb 10, 2009 at 09:22:28 AM EST
    ... that Republicans want to make the bill look even more expensive than it already is. There's nothing wrong with the AMT fix, really, but you're correct that it has nothing to do with stimulus.

    Of course (none / 0) (#3)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Tue Feb 10, 2009 at 09:29:05 AM EST
    Suck up stimulus money with extraneous stuff.

    It's obvious. I do like that the "centrists" are catching hell all over this time though. Even Hiatt did not stand up for them today.