Obama to Press for His Share of Bailout

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WASHINGTON - President-elect Barack Obama says he wants to be ready for any economic emergency. So he's asking Congress to approve the rest of the $700 billion bailout package.

Even though some in Congress are skeptical, it looks like the incoming President will get what he wants.

TARP Vote

With just a week to go before he officially assumes the office, the President-elect is kicking it into high gear on the economy, consulting with Senate Democrats and Republicans on Capitol Hill ahead of a possible vote later this week.

Under consideration: freeing up the second half of the $700 billion financial bailout package to give the incoming President quick access to funds he may need to help shore up the economy.

"I felt that it would be irresponsible for me if the first $350 billion already spent to enter in the administration without any potential ammunition should there be any sort of emergency or weakening of the financial systems," Obama said.

Bush Tag Teams With Obama on Bailout Request

"I don't intend to make the request unless he specifically asks me to make it," President George W. Bush stated Monday.

The President did file the formal request with Congress after Obama's official request, even as many lawmakers criticize his administration's handling of how the first $350 billion.

Question of Accountability

They want guarantees that the next round will be better spent, tracked, and managed. Obama pledged he'll do that and direct more of the money toward Main Street.

"My commitment is that we are going to fundamentally change some of the practices in using this next phase of the program," Obama vowed.

With those kind of assurances, GOP and Democratic leaders are signaling that they'll likely vote to release the money.

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