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Daschle: Bipartisanship needed for economic recovery

WASHINGTON (CNN) -- Praising the spirit of bipartisanship in Congress since the September 11 terror attacks, Senate Majority Leader Tom Daschle stressed the importance for Democrats and Republicans to work together to combat the threat of bioterrorism and the economic downturn.

"It's hard to express how angry I am about these attacks, how proud I am of the brave response on the part of my staff ... and so many others, " Daschle said in the weekly Democratic radio address. "But we cannot be paralyzed by our anger... we need to identify the weaknesses in our system in confronting bioterrorism, so that we can protect our people."

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Speaking first-hand about the anthrax scare, the South Dakota Democrat noted that he had addressed the need for greater protections against bioterrorism before a letter with anthrax arrived at his office earlier this month.

In order to confront the bioterrorism threat, Daschle said the nation's supply of antibiotics and vaccines should be increased and the government response to possible attacks should be better coordinated.

Daschle also stressed the need for a temporary economic stimulus package -- a measure that is underway in the Senate -- that includes tax cuts for families and businesses, investments, and help for those who lost their jobs as a result of the September 11 attacks.

But Daschle warned that the package should not be a vehicle for partisan bickering.

"It is not acceptable for either party merely to dust off pre-September 11 agendas and re-label them as 'economic stimulus,' " he said. "Our economic health is too important to fall victim to politics or ideology."



 
 
 
 



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