Obama Urges "No Games" to Pass Jobs Bill
President Obama unveils $447B legislative package with a forceful message: "Let's pass this bill... Let's get something done"
CBS-President Obama is sending this $447 billion jobs bill to Congress today, with a forceful message to Republicans to put politics aside.
"The only thing that's stopping it is politics," Mr. Obama said from the White House Rose Garden on Monday. "We can't afford these same political games... Let's get something done. Let's put this country back to work."
Mr. Obama unveiled his plan to jump start the economy, called the "Americans Jobs Act," before a rare joint session of Congress last week. The plan is larger than many expected. More than half of the plan is comprised of tax cuts for working Americans and small businesses, and it also includes spending initiatives in areas like infrastructure.
The president Monday morning stood surrounded by the type of workers he said his bill would support -- such as teachers, firefighters, construction workers, veterans, policemen and small business owners.
The bill includes various tax cuts for businesses, including a payroll tax cut and tax credits for companies that hire veterans or those who've been unemployed for more than six months.
"Instead of just talking about America's job creators, let's actually do something for America's job creators," he said.
The legislation also includes aid for states and local governments to keep public workers like teachers and firefighters on the payroll.
"This is a bill that will put people back to work all across the country," Mr. Obama said today. "Let's pass this bill," he repeatedly appealed to Congress, asking for "no games, no politics, no delays."
In the face of the worst recovery from a recession in the nation's history, a stubborn unemployment rate hovering around 9 percent and zero job growth in the month of August, the pressure is on the president to take action. Mr. Obama's own 2012 job prospects could also hinge on the success of his legislation, as voters grow skeptical of his handling of the economy.
Yet as the 2012 election season gets under way, it's unclear whether Republicans -- who have already this year taken a combative stance against the president's economic policies -- will be willing to cooperate.
Mr. Obama said today that voters don't have the "luxury" of waiting until the next elections, 14 months from now, for solutions.
"The notion there are folks who would say we're not going to [support these economic initiatives] because it's not convenient for our politics... that's exactly what folks are tired of," he said. "It's not OK in a time of great urgency and need across the country."