President Barack Obama urged Congress on Saturday to act on his 'to do' list for the third time in his weekly video address, saying their inaction to carry out the entirety of his jobs bill and put people back to work is the reason for the lagging American recovery.
"Here's the thing. We have the answers to these [economic] problems. We have plenty of big ideas and technical solutions from both sides of the aisle. That's not what's holding us back. What's holding us back is a stalemate in Washington," the president said Saturday.
"Every problem we face is within our power to solve. What's lacking is our politics. Remind your Members of Congress why you sent them to Washington in the first place," he added.
For weeks, the president has pushed representatives and senators on the Hill to act on his Congressional five-step 'to do' list, saying inaction is irresponsible and politically-motivated.
The 'to do' list, first handed to Congress on May 8, urges Congress to pass a tax credit for businesses that brings jobs back to the U.S. from overseas, help responsible homeowners refinance, pass an income tax credit for small businesses that add jobs, extend tax credits to clean energy businesses and create a Veterans Job Corps to help returning troops find work.
The president also urged Congress to pass the remaining features of his jobs bill, introduced last September, which he says would "put thousands of teachers, firefighters and police officers back on the job," increase infrastructure works and bolster small businesses by giving them tax breaks.
Republican opponents of the American Jobs Act (AJA) call it "turgid...infernal mish-mash of taxes, subsidies, and regulations."
"The AJA's only certain effect is to make everything worse than it already is by asking Congress to tighten the stranglehold that government regulation has already placed on the economy," Hoover Institution's Richard A. Epstein wrote when the bill was introduced.
But the president reiterated today he believes any opposition to the bill has political undertones. "Tell [Congress] to stop worrying about the next election and start worrying about the next generation," he said Saturday.
"I'm ready to work with anyone - Republican, Democrat, or Independent - who is serious about moving this country forward. And I hope Members of Congress will join me."
by RTT Staff Writer
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