Rich Galen

The 15-day clock started Monday so today, Wednesday we are down to 13 days. Assuming I can count on my fingers and one of my feet, that takes us to Monday, January 26 - six days AFTER President-elect Obama assumes command.

The Obama people have not, to my knowledge, told us why they asked President Bush to issue the request, but my long history with politics in Washington, DC tells me it has something to do with wanting to get this all done on Bush's watch so Democrats can lay all the blame on George W. and, when the economy recovers, claim all the credit for themselves.

Here's my recommendation to the GOP members of the Senate: Unless you are absolutely convinced that the world economic system will grind to a halt between now and say, Tuesday, January 21, do what you can to hold off the vote.

If the Congress votes this week to withhold the funds, then President Bush will have to veto the bill and send it back. If the Congress waits until next week, then President Obama having taken the helm, will have to veto the bill, and from that point onward the problem will be owned by his Administration.

I have said before that I am rooting for President Obama to be successful. But, I do not believe that his success or failure depends on whether a vote on that second $350 billion occurs this week or next.

Vote next week.

Rich Galen

Rich Galen has been a press secretary to Dan Quayle and Newt Gingrich. Rich Galen currently works as a journalist and writes at