Obama's Cell Phone Plea Helps Clear War Funds
Last-minute tensions healed; measure set to pass next week
By Matt Cantor,  Newser User
Posted Jun 12, 2009 7:02 AM CDT
Sen. Mitch McConnell of Ky., center, speaks during a news conference June 9, 2009. Joining him, from left are, Sen. Lamar Alexander, Sen. Jon Kyl, Sen. John Thune, and Sen. John Cornyn.   (AP Photo/Gerald Herbert)
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(Newser) – Congressional leaders settled on a $106 billion spending bill for the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan last night, but it took a last-minute intervention by President Obama via Rahm Emanuel's cell phone. When talks got bogged down over the release of detainee photos, Emanuel rushed to the Capitol and had Obama assure lawmakers via speaker phone that he would do everything in his power to block their release, reports Politico.

With that resolved, House and Senate negotiators finished work on the spending measure, which is now expected to clear Congress next week. The bill is vital to Obama because it covers not only war spending but a host of other issues, including $7.65 billion to fight the flu and $1 billion to encourage drivers to trade in gas guzzlers, notes the Wall Street Journal.