Small biz lending fund clears filibuster — finally

Passage looked pretty dicey earlier this week, but a bill that would increase lending to small businesses cleared the filibuster hurdle late Thursday.

Two Republicans joined the Democrats in a 60-37 vote.

Tennessee Senators Lamar Alexander and Bob Corker voted against the bill. I doubt if they will support the bill when it comes up for a final vote, but they should.

Although the bill is imperfect, it would provide $30 billion in desperately needed capital to small businesses.

The money would be passed through community banks, which would use the money to increase their lending to small businesses.

The imperfect part is that community banks that take Treasury’s money, are required to give the government stock in exchange. I wish the banks didn’t have give stock to the government.

Republicans have called the bill a bailout for small banks. It’s not.

The bottom line is what counts here — pumping fresh capital into small businesses that need loans to expand and create jobs. SMall biz creates the majority of new jobs in this country and it will be small businesses that lead the economy to full recovery.

Read more on the lending fund here.