WASHINGTON (CNN) – Despite direct lobbying by members of President Obama's administration in the last couple of weeks, many moderate House Republicans are still firmly opposed to the measure.
Before the House vote last month, 11 House Republicans attended a meeting at the White House with Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel to discuss their possible support. None of those members voted for the bill then, and CNN has learned that most do not intend to support the latest version either.
Pennsylvania Republican Jim Gerlach said he got calls from two Cabinet secretaries on Thursday –- HUD Secretary Sean Donovan and Transportation Secretary Secretary Ray LaHood – – but said the bill didn’t include the “fundamental change I think is needed.”
Rep Vern Ehlers, R- Mich, met with Obama’s White House legislative staff this week, but said the measure didn’t include enough items he thought would be effective stimulus to the economy.
Another Michigan Republican, Candice Miller, said she believes the compromise between the House and the Senate is worse than the original House bill. “I really wanted to get to yes because Lord knows we need the help in Michigan.” Miller said she asked for more direct help for the ailing auto industry and was disappointed the tax credit for auto buyers was scaled back. “I personally asked both the President and Rahm for something for the auto companies,” Miller said.
Spokespeople for Rep. Shelly Moore Capito, R-WV; Rep. Steve LaTourette, R-Ohio; and Rep. Leonard Lance, R-NJ, said these members will oppose the measure this afternoon.
A spokesperson for Rep Thomas Petri (WI) indicated that he will "not likely" vote for the bill.
And even though President Obama personally called on Rep Aaron Schock (IL) to support the measure while visiting the Caterpillar Plant in his district on Thursday, the Congressman's spokesman said he will be voting against it.
But Republican Congressman Anh "Joseph" Cao, R-La, said he is now “leaning yes" on the $787 billion economic stimulus bill, after voting with all other Republicans against the House version last month. Cao said he’s still reading the bill, but thought some aspects of the legislation could help rebuilding efforts in his New Orleans district.