WASHINGTON (AP) - "Closer," but not there yet.
That's the latest take from a key lawmaker familiar with the negotiations on a 700-billion-dollar bailout for financial firms. Congressional leaders and representatives of the Bush administration held a closed-door meeting Monday night.
Massachusetts Congressman Barney Frank, head of the House Financial Services Committee, says there's no time to debate whether the bailout is a good or bad thing. None of the lawmakers would say there is a timetable for action.
The emergency legislation would give the government broad power to buy up troubled assets from financial firms. Haggling continues. But there seems to be growing agreement on limits for executive compensation.
In one expansion of its original proposal, the administration is asking for broad power to buy up virtually any kind of bad asset from financial institutions, including credit card debt and car loans. And that would include institutions in the U.S. and abroad.