Yesterday President Obama appeared in the Rose Garden to reveal a never-before-seen hard copy of the legislative text of his $447 billion jobs plan. “Here it is. This is a bill that will put people back to work all across the country,” Obama said. “This is the bill that Congress needs to pass. No games, no politics, no delays.”
Obama first unveiled the American Jobs Act to a joint session of Congress in a speech last Thursday, but the specific details of the plan were not available until Monday morning. In the evening, Congress received Obama’s jobs plan in its entirety, and eleven different committees in the House divided it up as they received a referral of parts of the bill when it was transferred last night.
According to CQ’s Roll Call, after a weekend of polite curiosity surrounding the jobs bill, the veneer of bipartisanship seems to be crumbling. The jobs bill already has Republicans questioning several of President Obama’s motives, but the already contentious payroll tax component of the plan seems so far to be the biggest point of discussion.
It appears that the GOP-controlled Congress is set on dividing the bill up into multiple parts before sending them back to the President to be signed.
According to Politico, the Obama Administration will not stall in its attempt to get all parts of the bill through Congress. The White House won’t accept an “a la carte menu” Obama strategist David Axelrod said Tuesday. “The president has a package. The package works together. We need to do many things to get this economy moving and people back to work. Not just one thing,” Axelrod said on ABC’s “Good Morning America.”
With heightened talk of passing the bill in a single package, Obama is attempting to stay out front on the jobs bill, but the likelihood of its passage in the form released at yesterday’s Rose Garden press conference is slim.
Is the President willing to compromise with House Republicans to pass the American Jobs Act, even if it means that the original plan is eventually chopped up into smaller parts? Or is the President’s tougher talk, first on display in the Rose Garden press conference and furthered in a speech this afternoon at a Columbus, Ohio high school, showing his frustration with Congress? The American Jobs Act very well may be Obama’s first attempt to demonstrate that he can chart the jobs course alone.
Will the American Jobs Act fall victim to the same bitter partisan struggles that plagued the debt limit debates, or will we finally have a bill, that while flawed, will ultimately set the economy down the right course?
Courtesy of the Christian Science Monitor