In a surprise move, the House of Representatives rejected September 29 by a vote of 205-228 the Emergency Economic Stabilization Act (EESA) of 2008 (H.R. 3997)–the legislation cobbled together by the Bush administration and Democratic Congressional leaders designed to help stabilize the financial markets and bolster the finances of multiple financial services firms hit by the credit crunch.

In response to the news, the Dow Jones Industrial average plummeted more than 700 points; it closed the day with the biggest one-day point loss ever–777.68 to settle at 10,365.45, or a 6.98% drop. The S&P 500 fell 8.79% to 1,106.42, or 106.59 points.

CongressNow reported that Republicans voted against the legislation by a roughly 2-to-1 ratio and more than 90 Democrats voted against it. A House Financial Services Committee spokesman said it was unclear when the House would be voting again on the legislation.

Prior to the House action, the Senate had been expected to vote on the legislation on Wednesday, October 1. MSNBC reported late Monday afternoon the 29th that the House would reconvene Thursday, October 2.