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For more on the financial crisis, check out GlobeSt.com’s Webinar, “Wall Street In a Freefall—The Winners and Losers.”

WASHINGTON, DC-One grueling weekend later, Congress has apparently put together a rescue bill that its various factions and caucuses can grudgingly accept. Early Sunday morning negotiators from both the Senate and the House unveiled a 110-page plan to weed out the toxic mortgage debt threatening to completely destabilize the financial system. The House of Representatives began debate on the bill Monday morning and is expected to vote on it some time today. Statements from various leaders in both parties suggest it has enough votes to pass; the wild card, of course, is that the premise of a Wall Street bailout is very controversial and widely despised by constituents–so there is still a chance it may not. Indeed, House Republicans were able to derail negotiations last week with a last minute proposal to substitute the crux of the original plan–a government entity that would purchase the bad debt–with an approach in which the government insures the debt instead.

The insurance provision is part of the newly negotiated bill, but does not require the Treasury Secretary to use it. Other changes to the administration’s original proposal include limits on executive pay of those institutions that participate and a requirement for the president to submit a plan within five years to recoup the losses if Treasury is unable to eek out a profit selling the securities that it purchases.

The price tag to the bailout is still officially $700 billion but government officials have expressed hope that it may not be that much if Treasury does indeed make a profit from the securities. Money will be released in tranches, with $250 billion to be dispersed immediately, followed by $100 billion if the president deems it necessary. Treasury can request the remaining $350 billion, but Congress has the power to deny the funding if it chooses.

There are also provisions to prevent more foreclosures–although Democrats were not able to give bankruptcy judges the ability to change mortgage provisions. Also, the government will be taking equity in the companies that sell the securities to it.

Perhaps the biggest change to the original version proposed by the administration is the tighter oversight that has been put into place–an apparatus that includes an independent inspector general. The purchase of the securities will be under the auspices of a new office with Treasury called Office of Financial Stability, whose head would be subject to Senate confirmation and who would be required to publish guidelines for how it intends to price and profit from the purchase of the assets.

On Sunday, a very tired Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson–one of the key architects to the original plan–said he is pleased with the outcome. “I am confident this legislation gives us the flexibility to unclog our financial markets and increase the ability of our financial institutions to deliver the credit that will help create jobs,” he says in a prepared statement. “We are taking the steps needed to be ready to begin implementing this legislation as soon as it is signed.”

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