On Sept. 8, President Barack Obama announced before a joint session of Congress the American Jobs Act. He has been touring states notorious for their positions as swing states in elections, pushing the bill since its announcement.
This gives me pause on two big points. The first, why did this bill take so long to germinate? It’s obvious to people with a basic understanding of economics that if you have no wage earners you have no economy.
What was perhaps the largest factor in our economic downturn after the housing fiasco? Unemployment. So then when the president announced the first round of stimulus I thought that this was in the pipe behind it and not two years later.
I understand that it takes time to formulate these things, draw up research, and check the law, but my first thought when faced with even a minor recession would be to look at the New Deal and see what the proven solution to economic trauma is.
In the interim between the Stimulus Act of 2009 and now, the U.S. House of Representatives proved that they can and will hold the nation hostage for political gains, a move that could not have been possible if more Americans were gainfully employed. This is because more workers equates to more income tax and more revenues means less deficit. So this is late, and a group of empowered Republicans are likely to reject it simply because it is the president’s idea.
My second issue with the situation is Republicans are likely to call this grandstanding in order to launch a campaign. So if, after a joint meeting with Congress, a president begins touring states like Ohio, Virginia, and Florida to push the idea, it’s hard to say he is not.
I love this bill. I think it is a creative solution to a problem that needs solving but I think, by the way the stage has been set for it, that it is ultimately doomed. And it is not doomed because Republicans will hate the ideas in it.
Aside from the minor tax hike for the rich, many of the ideas are Republican in origin. It is doomed because this president is presenting it to this congress this late in the game, and trying to gain support this way.
I wish I could support the methods but I can’t. That doesn’t mean I won’t voice my support of the bill to my congressman. Whether in support or rejection, anyone with an opinion of this bill needs to write his or her congressman too.
Because the only way things are going to change is if we get active in our government.
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