WASHINGTON (CN) – The Senate voted 61-37 Tuesday to advance small business legislation that would ease credit and cut taxes for small business.
Republican Sens. George Voinovich of Ohio and George Lemieux of Florida joined Democrats in voting in favor of limiting debate on the bill, giving Democrats the 60 votes needed to push the bill toward a final vote.
Voinovich said he would not block the bill just to allow his party to continue to push for amendments, saying the proposed amendments had nothing to do with the bill and amounted to partisan messaging.
“We don’t have time for messaging,” Voinovich said last week. “We don’t have time anymore. This country is really hurting.”
The bill, titled The Small Business Jobs and Credit Act of 2010, includes $12 billion in tax breaks and a $30 billion lending fund to encourage banks to lend to small businesses.
President Obama had asked Congress to make the small business bill its first priority when it came back from its summer recess on Monday, saying its passage would help spur job growth.