Call it the comeback kid.
The Senate has voted to end debate on a small business jobs bill, 60 to 37. The bill would restore the lending fund to the jobs bill. Under the bill, the Treasury Department would provide as much as $30 billion to banks with under $10 billion in assets in order to spark loans for small businesses. The bill includes provisions designed to lower small business loan rates. Many have called for a small business bailout since the big banks and other large corporations received funds under TARP. However, proponents contend this is not a TARP for small business. The bill has already passed the House.
The vote, which came Thursday night, is a procedural move that will allow the bill to be brought before the Senate for a vote. A spokeswoman for Nevada Senator Harry Reid, a Democrat, said the Senate will likely vote on the amendment to the bill early next week. The amendment also added efforts to promote exports and to lower Medicare payment fraud.
Once the bill comes before the Senate, it will only require a simple majority to pass. Because the bill already received 60 votes in order to end debate, it stands a very good chance of passing next week and being quickly signed into law by President Obama, who has been a strong proponent of the bill. The Obama administration first proposed the lending fund.