Cantor strikes conciliatory tone before Obama jobs speech
September 7th, 2011
08:55 PM ET
3 years ago

Cantor strikes conciliatory tone before Obama jobs speech

Washington (CNN) - Striking a conciliatory tone the day before President Obama comes to Capitol Hill to reveal his jobs plan, House Majority Leader Eric Cantor left the door open to working with him on some of the proposals he's expected to present in his address to a joint session of Congress Thursday evening.

Cantor said discussions with voters over the summer recess made it clear they are anxious about the economy, and he added Americans "have lost a lot of confidence in Washington and while they are going through such tough times they're frankly sick of the rancor in this town."

The number two House Republican noted the GOP continues to have a major difference of opinion with the president on the best way to create jobs, citing his party’s opposition to the president’s 2009 stimulus.

But moving forward Cantor stressed, "We've got to focus on areas of commonality, try and transcend differences here. I think we need to build consensus and that's going to require us all not to impugn motives or to question patriotism."

Three areas in which Cantor indicated the GOP may be able to find some common ground include some infrastructure spending, assistance for jobless Americans, and trade.

But while the president is expected to call for more federal spending for infrastructure projects and the unemployed, Cantor maintained that there needed to be more flexibility for states on how they spend money they already receive, and an effort to reform federal programs to support the unemployed with a focus on getting people back to work.

Cantor also encouraged the White House to move the three pending trade deals with Colombia, Panama, and Korea quickly to the Hill, saying reports show passage of the trade deals could "see the creation of hundreds of thousands of additional jobs."

House Speaker John Boehner declined to answer questions from reporters Wednesday about the details emerging on the jobs package the president plans to unveil Thursday. But Boehner’s spokesman was careful to reserve judgment, telling reporters the speaker “will wait and listen to the President’s speech and we will consider those ideas along with other alternatives that have been discussed and debated in Congress.”

Cantor reiterated that House Republicans will move forward with their own agenda to facilitate growth in the short term - rolling back regulations that they believe are anti-business and providing small businesses a tax cut to encourage them to hire more new workers.

Shortly after the president lays out his plan Thursday, the contrast between the president’s approach and that of House Republicans will be on display not far from Washington. President Obama is scheduled to hold a jobs event in Cantor’s backyard of Richmond, Virginia, on Friday. Cantor announced Wednesday he’ll hold his own economic event the same day in his district.


Filed under: Eric Cantor • Jobs • John Boehner • President Obama
soundoff (55 Responses)
  1. Grow up already...

    He's going to hold his own economic event the same day? What a coincidence! I'm not sure why Cantor needs one, given all the focus he's had on jobs... Oh, wait....

    September 7, 2011 10:39 pm at 10:39 pm |
  2. Anonymous

    "Striking a conciliatory tone the day before President Obama comes to Capitol Hill to reveal his jobs plan, House Majority Leader Eric Cantor left the door open to working with him on some of the proposals he's expected to present in his address to a joint session of Congress Thursday evening."
    -------------------------------------------------–
    Say what? Could it be that at least ONE

    September 7, 2011 10:40 pm at 10:40 pm |
  3. A Kickin` Donkey

    Mr. Cantor – Can you explain to me, an Ivy League MBA`er, how providing a tax cut to a business is going to somehow warrant additional output from said business?

    I`m waiting.

    September 7, 2011 10:45 pm at 10:45 pm |
  4. DENNA

    "Striking a conciliatory tone the day before President Obama comes to Capitol Hill to reveal his jobs plan, House Majority Leader Eric Cantor left the door open to working with him on some of the proposals he's expected to present in his address to a joint session of Congress Thursday evening."
    -------------------------------------------------
    Say what? Could it be that at least ONE of the Teatards has a brain and that the entire lot of them are not as stunningly stupid as they appear? Maybe NOW something will get done.

    September 7, 2011 10:45 pm at 10:45 pm |
  5. ThinkAgain

    ut moving forward Cantor stressed, "We've got to focus on areas of commonality, try and transcend differences here. I think we need to build consensus and that's going to require us all not to impugn motives or to question patriotism."

    Pretty rich coming from a Republican, whose party has endlessly and consistently thwarted the will of the American people who elected a Democratic President, Democratic House and Democratic Senate in 2008!

    Cantor = Schmuck (look it up if you don't know what it means)

    September 7, 2011 10:50 pm at 10:50 pm |
  6. contessa

    Haaaaaaaaaaaaaaa!!! Today is today!! And of course for the GOP, tomorrow is another same ole same ole NO day!! I doubt Cantor has learned to spell the word C O M P R O M I S E !!

    September 7, 2011 10:52 pm at 10:52 pm |
  7. CBR

    Representative Cantor sounds like a man who is only doing this because some constituents told him what to do. Clearly people in the country are unhappy with Congress giving them a 18% approval rating.

    Mr. Cantor must have heard from people outside his district as well. His choices and his ideas do not match the high hopes people had for him. His leadership is in question as his strong backing of the TEA Party. His continual mention of a constitutional amendment to get a balanced budget will cost millions before it is enacted.. By bringing this up he can blur the role of what Congress should be doing.

    Let's see if Sen. McConnell will move away from his position of stopping anything proposed by President Obama to make sure he is not re-elected. If that does not make Americans angry than what will. Congress does not keep a person from being re-elected. The Constitution makes no provision for that and the Republicans seem to be quoting the Constitution and continually telling us what should be in there and what should be removed. They do not wish to follow the guidelines for Congress that are in the Constitution.

    September 7, 2011 10:54 pm at 10:54 pm |
  8. Debbie

    If Obama trusts anything Cantor says he is more a fool than naive at this point. It is quite obvious that there is no bi-partisanship. It is really quite simple. The GOP has plainly said they hope for the failure for Obama so it doesn't really matter if Obama has a good plan or not. Nothing will be accomplished. As the GOP/TEA work towards Obama's failure they fail to work for JOBS for the American people.

    September 7, 2011 10:56 pm at 10:56 pm |
  9. Wulfgang

    Eric Cantor is on;y changing his tune because of the backlash on his comments about Fema. He cannot be trusted, he lies with a straight face, remember this guy was a lawyer. He will soon be getting a call from Rush Linbaugh the real leader of the Republican Party and then he will back track on his willingnss to work with this president.

    September 7, 2011 11:10 pm at 11:10 pm |
  10. jane

    Don't worry cantor ur days are limited....you will be voted out of office!

    September 7, 2011 11:21 pm at 11:21 pm |
  11. Franco, FL

    Am I dreaming or Cantor is on pipe? All those republicans do is say no. I hope it happens, that would be a miracle.

    September 7, 2011 11:28 pm at 11:28 pm |
  12. Virginia

    This guy is such a lying weasel.

    September 7, 2011 11:35 pm at 11:35 pm |
  13. independent

    While I would love to see it, I'll believe it when I see it. The GOTParty only wants to win the next election. They don't care what happens to the economy, they won't pass a bill that is seen to be an initiative of the President.

    September 7, 2011 11:54 pm at 11:54 pm |
  14. Aaron

    Too bad Mr. Teabagger/left the U.S. default doesn't saddle himself with a substantial amount of the blame for the DC rancnor. How do you know Cantor is lying? His lips are moving.

    September 8, 2011 12:27 am at 12:27 am |
  15. ryanrory

    on the surface this looks conciliatory but there seems to be several tentatives in the quotes of cantor. seeing is believing. Till the republicans actually say yes through the power of the vote, I will not believe a word he says.

    September 8, 2011 12:28 am at 12:28 am |
  16. rafael milan

    Mr Cantor it is just another one that we can't trust , all the republicans want is put down our President ,not matter what how it is the cost... It is really a disgrace for all ...

    September 8, 2011 12:31 am at 12:31 am |
  17. rafael milan

    We just can't believe on those republicans.

    September 8, 2011 12:36 am at 12:36 am |
  18. Republicans elect and attract the not so smart

    What? Is the Eric Cantor I've grown to loathe and despise? Oh, maybe some citizens in Virginia finally told this putz he needs to work with the president. I hope they work to make his royal idiot-ness an unemployed congressman next year.

    September 8, 2011 12:53 am at 12:53 am |
  19. TEA PARTY Mike

    Cantor is correct there is some common ground. Some more spending for infrastructure, extend unemployment, extend the payroll tax cuts and pass the trade bills. These items can all be part of a bipartisan bill.
    But I suspect Republicans will say these items are needed to help maintain the present economy while Obama will claim they will create millions of jobs.
    I do not see anything new so far in Obama's plan.
    Infrastructure spending – already spent billions in first stimulus
    Money to bail out states – already spent billions in first stimulus
    Extend unemployment – already extended unemployment several times
    Extend payroll tax cut – already in place, extending does not give anyone more money to spend then they already have.
    Pass trade bills – this is new, should help some, but will take some time, not quick fix
    This is nothing more than stimulus two. Stimulus one spent 800 billion doing all this. Sounds like stimulus 2 would be 300 to 400 billion. If 800 billion failed how is half that or less going to do any better?
    And Obama wants to increase taxes to pay for part of it. Why would you need to do that? If it works to stimulate the economy and grows jobs it will increase tax revenue from a larger economy and more people paying taxes. A stimulus that works is supposed to pay for itself. Does Obama expect it to fail again?
    What is missing from this picture and from the first stimulus is broad based measures to help the private sector. And what has been added to the overall picture since stimulus one was passed are a mountain of new regulations and mandates added on to the private business sector over the last 3 years. Businesses are saying that many of these need to be rolled back or suspended before they can grow and create more jobs. Republicans will be passing bills to do that independent from any new stimulus two bill. If Senate Democrats kill those bills, it is not likely that stimulus two will produce any better results than stimulus one.

    September 8, 2011 01:31 am at 1:31 am |
  20. Marry

    What is new with the GOP/TP? Nothing!

    September 8, 2011 01:37 am at 1:37 am |
  21. Angy

    Yeah right. cantor you are a lying jerk.

    September 8, 2011 01:50 am at 1:50 am |
  22. Just a thought

    Not a good idea Mr. E.

    September 8, 2011 02:06 am at 2:06 am |
  23. Raymond

    I am encouraged by what I read here. I have been very disappointed in the Republican Party lately. Fanatics have highjacked the Tea Party Group. I don't think they really hear what they are saying. Everything I hear from them hurts the Poor and Elderly and is in direct violation of the Christian principles they verbally espouse They need to choose. If they are christian then the argument stoops. We need a congress that acts adult, and gets it's job done.

    September 8, 2011 02:30 am at 2:30 am |
  24. "The GOP biggest deception is getting the Poor and Middle class to believe they are out to help them"

    Sighing!! The GOP is trying to present a different view of themselves given how the American people are fed up with their childish ways of late!!! But it is just a ploy for votes!! I mean at the Republican debate last night, Newt basically said we must not fight one another because our goal should be to beat the President. So therefore don't any of you point out any faults in one another up here!!

    September 8, 2011 04:01 am at 4:01 am |
  25. Ohio man

    This guy can't have any friends.. so sad. I think he is power hungry and really dont care what people say because he can't be that stupid. oh well this is what you get America when you don't vote.

    September 8, 2011 05:57 am at 5:57 am |
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