Still, the official told ABC News that Treasury did not insist on any exemption. As the official put it, Treasury had no leverage in the situation because everyone knew the president would sign the stimulus bill, so it was up to Congress to decide what to include.
Dodd is not the only Democratic senator denying any culpability. Sen. Max Baucus of Montana is the chairman of the Senate Finance Committee and an appointed conferee on the stimulus bill. But on Tuesday, he said the bill was written mostly by Senate and Treasury staffers, who were responsible, he said, for changing the language.
"This was a huge bill," Baucus said. "We agreed on structure. Then when staffs and Treasury get in the room and actually write it, that's where it got dropped. And frankly, it was such a rush, talking about the stimulus bill right now, to get it passed, I did not have time, other conferees did not have time to address many of the provisions that were modified significantly. We do the best we can, but we missed that stuff as a result."
ABC News' Z. Byron Wolf contributed to this report.