updated 2/9/2009 1:29:46 PM ET 2009-02-09T18:29:46

Happy Friday!

Hello everybody, and welcome to the Shuster "Daily Briefing" for February 6, 2009. At this hour, we are trying to figure out if Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid is going to bring the massive economic stimulus plan to a vote tonight.  It appears that the package, warts and all, is ready.

But then again, I just read a wire story that Republican moderate Sen. Susan Collins came out of a meeting a few minutes ago with Reid and was "not as happy" as when she went in. Reid will likely only bring the measure to a vote when he is certain Democrats have at least 60 votes to withstand a Republican filibuster. However, it's not even clear if Republicans will definitely filibuster to try and stop the bill.

Adding to the drama today was this awful jobs report that came out this morning; it's the worst in 35 years.

In any case, we've noticed a dramatic change in tone from President Obama over the past 24 hours. His remarks have been very pointed and laced with a dramatic and urgent tone. We will start the show tonight by talking with Virginia Gov. Tim Kaine. He is also the DNC Chairman and was with the President last night when Mr. Obama seemed to "let it rip" in terms of his new aggressive tone.

After Kaine, we will speak with a few senators about where the vote stands tonight. Again, we expect things to be "breaking" perhaps as we go on the air. So, we may throw out the scripts and just go with the Senate floor. That's the really fun thing about a big vote in Congress, things can change pretty quickly. Watching the drama unfold and catching the stories in real time always makes for interesting TV. So, as one of my friends likes to say, "fasten your seat belts, it's going to be a wild ride."

In our second block, I'm really excited to chat with the Washington Post's Steven Pearlstein. He has taken a closer look at some of the economic theories and arguments that lawmakers have floated in this debate; statements that are utter non-sense. Steven has already identified some of the most egregious examples.  We will play them and let Steven take the members to task.

In our back half, we are going to talk with some 9/11 family members who met at the White House late today with President Obama. The issue was the potential closing of Guantanamo Bay prison. 

But, we will also throw a few questions to the guests about the ongoing problems and controversies surrounding Ground Zero in New York.

By the way, we have a new segment we are going to try out tonight.  Editor/Producer Chris Pendy is working on a 70 second montage that will bring you the highlights of the economic arguments today in a compelling and highly entertaining fashion. There have been some really interesting remarks at the White House and on the Senate floor and Pendy is stringing them together in his own unique, artistic, and terrific style. We aren't quite sure what to name this segment. But, take a look and let us know if you have any ideas. Tonight it will probably air around 6:40 p.m. EST.

One of the segments we've had for a few weeks now is "Hypocrisy Watch." Tonight, we will take a closer look at the Senators who oppose capping the pay of CEO's who got federal bailouts but embrace restrictions on other people who get government help.

In our "Briefing Room," we have a couple of options at this hour. One of them involves the guy who is trying to sell a painting of Joe the Plumber on E-Bay. The "artist" (I use that term loosely) wants $250.

"Quote of the Day" is from Pablo Picasso:

"Art is a lie that makes us realize truth."

Tonight is going to be a fun show and, there is a ton of news. So, thanks in advance for watching.

"1600" airs at 6 p.m. in Washington, D.C.; 5 p.m. in Chicago; 4 p.m. in Cheyenne; and 3 p.m. in Long Beach.

Shuster


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