Monday, September 12, 2011
In the News: "Pass This Jobs Bill Now!"
Last Thursday, President Obama gave his long-awaited speech before Congress. In it he outlined a bill, which he has just submitted to Congress, to create new jobs in a variety of industries, generate tax revenue (especially by increasing the contributions of "job creators"), and grow the economy.
Our friends in the UK printed the full text of the speech, with a video, in The Guardian. You can read and see it here.
Already, as expected, there is push-back from Republicans in Congress. Even though the resistance doesn't seem as heated as in early August with the "debate" over the debt ceiling, there is still a marked reluctance to give full support to this bill.
To me, Mr.Obama's speech was impassioned, stirring, and sensible. If the bill he described is the bill he is asking Congress to pass immediately, I see no reason why reasonable people should not champion for it, and vote it into law.
My view? Republicans should pass it, all of it, right now. They should pass it for their own survival, if nothing else.
Much of the deadlock in American Government has been a result of a blind refusal by conservative Republicans to hand Mr. Obama anything that looks like a victory, even when these same Republicans have rallied for the same ideas Mr. Obama has proposed.
In other words, it is possible that Republicans may block this bill in spite of their support for many of its ideas, BECAUSE THEY BELIEVE IT MIGHT WORK, and might be the right bill for this moment in history. And to let Mr. Obama claim credit for an economic victory would, for some Republicans, be akin to political suicide. Otherwise, I see LITTLE REASON why ANYONE would be reluctant to vote for this particular bill.
The bill seems no worse than anything else put forth so far by our political leaders. Nothing else has worked, and there is very little time before the next election. And people are hurting, as is our infrastructure and our economy in general.
IF REPUBLICANS FEEL THIS BILL IS GENUINELY THE WRONG SOLUTION TO OUR ECONOMIC WOES...All the more reason they should pass it, all of it, and right away. If they feel that strongly about the bill's ineffectiveness, they should play the noble enablers, give Mr. Obama enough rope, as it were, and then say "we told you so" later. If the bill does nothing to promote job growth or economic recovery, then Republicans will have an issue on which to hang their campaign; and the White House...and Congress...will be theirs in 2012.
Of course, if it passes, and the economy shows signs of coming back...Well, then the Republicans can at least have the satisfaction of having done something for the good of the economy and the country... A naive view on my part, as most of these leaders reside on a self-made plane of existence, far removed from the citizens they purport to represent.
A very smart speech on the part of Mr. Obama, and an interesting quandary for the Republicans as a result....