WASHINGTON — Lawmakers engaged in a bipartisan pummeling Tuesday of Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson, sharply criticizing him for — among other things — refusing to create a loan modification program and reversing course on purchasing illiquid assets.

Several members from both political parties on the House Financial Services Committee questioned Mr. Paulson's credibility, suggesting he tricked Congress into giving him $700 billion and is refusing to carry out other provisions of the Oct. 3 bailout law. The skeptical tone of their questions suggested Mr. Paulson could face resistance if he decides to ask Congress for permission to spend the additional $350 billion available under the law.

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