Republicans talk jobs ahead of Obama's speech
September 8th, 2011
03:30 PM ET
7 years ago

Republicans talk jobs ahead of Obama's speech

Washington (CNN) – In back to back news conferences Thursday, rank and file Republicans pounced on President Barack Obama's jobs proposal, saying the president should instead focus on eliminating burdensome government regulations on small business owners.

Ahead of Thursday night's presidential address to a joint session of Congress, Senator John Barrasso, R-Wyoming, took the first swing, demanding "details" on Obama's proposal.

"We want specifics," said Barrasso. "We want to hear that he understands the impact, the heavy wet blanket that regulations are on our job creators. We need to make it easier and cheaper for the private sector to create jobs and it seems what comes out of the White House makes it harder and more expensive to create private sector jobs."

Barrasso led nine Senate and House members from the Western Caucus, which represents states west of Kansas, as they presented their own plan for job creation. Their proposal would roll back regulations on things like pesticide permits, would eliminate what they call "backdoor cap and tax" regulations, and pushes for swift passage of a trio of Free Trade Agreements with Panama, Colombia, and South Korea. They say eliminating regulation and opening up more free trade would create more jobs than Mr. Obama's plan.

Just minutes after the Western Caucus ended their news conference, Sen. Lamar Alexander, R-Tennessee, took to the same podium with another group of GOP senators to push their jobs agenda.

"No one blames the president for the economy he inherited, but he should take responsibility for his policies making it worse." said Alexander. "Republicans are ready to work with the president and to make it easier and cheaper to create private sector jobs. We've suggested a number of ways to do that: lower tax rates with fewer loopholes, fewer regulations."

Another issue that some Republicans are taking aim at, Obama's call to extend the payroll tax cut, which gives workers a two percent tax cut in their weekly paychecks. Senator John Thune, R-South Dakota, called it a sugar high and said he "was not a big fan of that when it happened last time."

"It's a $112 billion cost and it's also something that, in my view, is a very short term sort of sugar high, maybe get a very little economy pop in the near term but we ought to be focused on long term policies that will promote economic growth," Thune said.

Senator Orrin Hatch, R-Utah, who co-authored the original payroll tax break bill in 2010, said his support was conditioned on what was attached to the tax extension.

"Well it depends on whether it's conglomerated with a whole bunch of other things we can't support," said Hatch. "Most of us are for tax cuts and that would amount to a tax cut."

- Follow Xuan Thai on Twitter: @thaicnn

Filed under: Congress • Jobs • President Obama • Republicans
soundoff (42 Responses)
  1. Mikey

    They've been TALKING jobs for a year now. What have they done?

    September 8, 2011 03:38 pm at 3:38 pm |
  2. ThinkAgain

    Take cuts for the wealthy does NOT create jobs here in the US; they create jobs overseas where labor is cheap and environmental regulations don't exist.

    De-regulation for its own sake leads to massive abuses, unsafe products and services, and runaway greed of the type that brought down the global economy just a few short years ago.

    These are the only "ideas" Repubs have to offer.

    Been there, done that, much to our nation's detriment.


    September 8, 2011 03:42 pm at 3:42 pm |
  3. Lynda/Minnesota

    "Senator John Thune, R-South Dakota, called it a sugar high and said he "was not a big fan of that when it happened last time."

    The only "sugar high" I've noticed is this new Republican Party filled with misfits and inept pretending they have the majority of Americans on their side - as they rape and pillage the majority of Americans they THINK are still on their side. I haven't been a big fan for a decade now. Doubt I ever will again.

    September 8, 2011 03:42 pm at 3:42 pm |
  4. ThinkAgain

    "We need to make it easier and cheaper for the private sector to create jobs ..." Senator John Barrasso, R-Wyoming

    This is code for wanting to eliminate the minimum wage, child labor , anti-discrimination and workplace safety laws.

    Why don't all these Repubs move to China or Somalia or some other country where these types of "burdens" don't hinder businesses?

    Do Repubs really believe that our nation won't suffer, that her people won't suffer, if we gut the very things that have created our civil society?

    Repubs are either sociopathic or delusional.

    September 8, 2011 03:44 pm at 3:44 pm |
  5. Ed Texas

    No one blames the president for the economy he inherited? The GOP/Tea Baggers started blaming Obama day one he became Preident! The GOP/Tea Baggers do not want to take responsibility for the MAJOR role of the GOP/Tea Party in this mess. Not even counting the preexisting role under Dubya Bush they had that created this economic situation in the first place with deregulations and toxic assets, Lets look at their current work such as they debt ceiling debacle which led us to loose our AAA rating. As if that wasn't enough the GOP/Tea Baggers part in NOT putting forth any jobs legislation as they promised in the mid-term elections. Where is the jobs legislation that they promised? Are tax cuts their solution for everything?

    September 8, 2011 03:50 pm at 3:50 pm |
  6. grrace

    First of all, Republicans wouldn't know a truly small business owner if she slapped them in the face. Second, the policies that were extended that Republicans claim "made the economy worse" were REPUBLICAN POLICIES...such as the extension of Bush Tax Cuts. Third, WE are SICK of EATING GOP tax cuts...they DON'T CREATE JOBS!

    September 8, 2011 03:50 pm at 3:50 pm |
  7. thomas

    Barrasso and the GOP obstructionists need to take the cotton out of there ears and stuff it in there mouths !

    In other words , shut up and listen !

    September 8, 2011 03:50 pm at 3:50 pm |
  8. ConservaFASCISTS/TEAliban/TEAhadists

    I swear to God these fascists want everything their way. They act like we have short term memories and forgot how we got into this mess. The President hasn't even given his proposals yet and here you these fascists telling us what they want. How many of these TEApublicans voted to raise the debt limit under George Bush? How many of these SOBs voted against any spending measure from Bush? I find it shocking how many of the proposals the President is supporting used to be republican ideas and now all of a sudden they're all against them.

    September 8, 2011 03:52 pm at 3:52 pm |
  9. Bill

    Tell that punk Barrasso you do not demand anything of the president. You ask politely. What a slime.

    September 8, 2011 03:53 pm at 3:53 pm |
  10. Ruth

    OMG they will never stop pouncing on the President who has done so much to better America. The rant about the President's speeches when they themselves cannot shut up for a day. My family and friends are just FED UP of the GOP/REPUBLICAN. We will get together to vote for OBAMA'S 2nd term and I wish there was a third term I would have voted for him again. The republicans are the party of NO. They just cannot bear to see a black american ruling them. Every time they accused him of something they were proven wrong. All I can say is THE REPUBS /GOPERS TAKE HIS GOODNESS FOR WEAKNESS. But let me say this he has more integrity then any of you GOPERs. LEAVE THE MAN ALONE AND HE WILL WORK WONDERS. STOP OBJECTING TO EVERYTHING HE PROPOSES. STOP WANTING TO SEE HIS WATERLOO.



    September 8, 2011 03:53 pm at 3:53 pm |
  11. RRP

    The homeland Terrorist Republicans are not going to convince me that they all of sudden know what is best for this country and it's hard working people.... These guys are a discusting, shameful and soon to be history... Hitler killed millions before he was stopped but he was STOPPED... Same goes for the EVIL REPUBLICANS... they will be STOPPED!

    September 8, 2011 03:55 pm at 3:55 pm |
  12. michaelam

    The Republican/Teahadist definition of job creation--tax cuts for the wealthy and deregulation!

    What they fail to grasp is both policies are total failures. Tax cuts do not create jobs in OUR country, perhaps India and/or China but NOT the USA. Tax cuts coupled with deregulation brought our country to its knees!

    Think of a new plan, Teahadists! The last two failed!

    September 8, 2011 03:56 pm at 3:56 pm |
  13. Sniffit

    Yawn. Rolling back pesticide permits? "Hey maw...furget the moonshine...pass me a glass o' that there DDT!!!" Screw these jerks. Pesticides pollute the environment and are generally dangerous chemicals used int he production of our food know...THINGS WE INGEST. The permitting process is how we assure that people using them are doing so in compliance with safety and other guidelines THAT IMPROVE OUR SAFETY AND QUALITY OF LIFE. Barasso and company are just pandering to special interests WHO ARE ALREADY USING MIGRANT LABOR INSTEAD OF AMERICANS ANYWAY.

    "pushes for swift passage of a trio of Free Trade Agreements with Panama, Colombia, and South Korea. "

    Obama's been pushing for that himself. This is just an attempt to take credit for it by pre-emptively blathering about it first. Ever had someone tell you to do something when you were already doing it? Yeah...that's right...they're jsut trying to put you in your "place" and assure themselves that they have power and control over you. Petty nonsense.

    September 8, 2011 03:57 pm at 3:57 pm |
  14. johnson

    What Regulations are they talking about? If there are any they were probably always there to begin with. How come the American people have not heard of an arguement of what these regulations really are. We have not heard of any specifics.

    September 8, 2011 03:59 pm at 3:59 pm |
  15. once upon a horse

    so NOW the Republicans want to talk about jobs. What a freaking joke. After the 2010 election of jobs, jobs, JOBS..they went after social issues and trying to repeal HCR. Then it was budget concerns. Are they finally starting to look at the polls and see that the Congress has a 13% approval rating with the GOP overall having a lower one than both the president and the Democrats? Maybe if they are finally looking at the polls they will also see that a majority of the American people FAVOR ending the Bush tax cuts, increased taxes on the upper 2%, ending tax breaks for big oil, and closing corporate tax loopholes including those for hedgefund owners. All things the president and most Democrats themselves favor as well.

    September 8, 2011 04:04 pm at 4:04 pm |
  16. al in memphis

    It's official now, the Repubs think we are all idots. They don't think we have one ounce of ability to think for ourselves or know when we getting crapped on. While I don't doubt that some companies would benefit from rolling back rules, there is a reason why food have to be label from it country of origin– because we don't trust our food safety to the cheap methods of other countries.
    I'm all for free trade, but often those pushing for it are companies who have cheap manufacturing plants (or plan too) in those countries so they can ship products here with little or no tariffs. That's just another way of losing jobs. As far as repealing health care, it's not okay for cost to keep rising period.

    September 8, 2011 04:05 pm at 4:05 pm |
  17. CaliforniaBC

    What regulations are hurting small businesses?? Sounds like another empty talking point to me.

    They want to hear specific, huh? Well gee...I seem to remember a bunch of "talk" before the 2010 midterms about how jobs will be the GOP's "JOB ONE" when they entered office but...hmmmm...WHERE ARE THE PROPOSALS??

    Tax cuts and deregulation? It seems those are the VERY same things that doubled the debt and caused the MASSIVE recession to begin with. Same ol' same ol' and nothing new. Sounds like the GOP needs to look in the mirror before they criticize the President for his policies.

    September 8, 2011 04:06 pm at 4:06 pm |
  18. Senior Citizen

    For the life of me I can not understand how the Republican's can keep saying that the rich need tax breaks to create jobs. They received those tax breaks from Bush at least 10 years ago and so we should be overrun with jobs according to what keep saying. If it hasn't worked in 10 years what makes them think that it will work now!!! It won't and it's just another way for the divide between rich and poor in this country to widen. We wouldn't be in this fix in the 1st place if Bush hadn't started 2 wars and at the same time reduced taxes on the rich. Most 5th graders are smarter than that and know it won't work and yet they are still beating a dead horse and running to the bank with their tax savings why so many in American are having trouble putting food on the table.

    We need for the tax breaks to stop immediately and we need to stop sending money to countries that do not appreciate it in the first place and for the most part I don't think that the poeple in those countries see any of the money anyway, just their crooked leaders.

    September 8, 2011 04:08 pm at 4:08 pm |
  19. kakaraka

    These yahooos still don't understand that tax cut and less regulations don't create jobs and that the main job creation factor is consumer spending. You can have zero tax, if you don't have customers to buy your products/services, you will not produce anything and hire people. The more the demand, the more the offer and production, the more employee need and the more hiring. That's the rule. Tax and regulations do not do anything to job creation but consumer demand. Right now, that's the problem facing the nation. Consumer spending is all time low, hence companies are not having enough demand to produce more goods and hire more workers. What a waste party GOP has become.

    September 8, 2011 04:09 pm at 4:09 pm |
  20. Gino Martell

    It is amazing to us Independents to listen to republican blame all the problems of our country on 0bama. When do they and the previous two term administration take responsibility. Two wars and tax cuts. Go figure.

    September 8, 2011 04:11 pm at 4:11 pm |
  21. Name king

    When bush had all these deregulations and tax cuts for corporations why was these corporations skipping town for emerging markets and low wages. Lesson obviously regulations are not impeding big companies from making money because they are making more money with these so called regulations than any time in history. Why would they want to change anything in that equation. Businesses is all about cutting cost and using the minimum to get the maximum payoff. Their share holders will tolerate nothing less. Why should corporations stay in America when emerging country's markets are getting swallowed up by china. Big business got to be on the forefront to beat china in this competing global markets. Furthermore we only have 300 hundred million people with a large amount of corporations in one spot. Big corporations don't like competion especially with a dwindling demand base. Emerging markets loves American quality and their is virtually no competition. What share holder is going to put up with patriotic sentiments while their overseas competitors get all the businesses. It's time these repugs be real with the American people and show them the reality of what really going on and stop lying to the gullible in america. Demand is what needed.

    September 8, 2011 04:12 pm at 4:12 pm |
  22. S.B. Stein E.B. NJ

    Really? Now they want specifics? They control the House and did nothing. Why should they be asking for details when they never offered anything before.

    September 8, 2011 04:12 pm at 4:12 pm |
  23. LegendRx

    These guys are a bunch of clowns, no plans, no ideas, no real direction for this country except the same broken policies that got us into this mess, why should we continue to trust the republican leaders, by the way, of which, low regulation with low oversight and turning a blind eye to the private sector pillaging, blundering and prostituting this country to hell gates and beyond. The republican party are a bunch of turds floating in waste water. period.

    September 8, 2011 04:17 pm at 4:17 pm |
  24. SDLiving

    So let me get this straight.....the President is still hours away from giving his speech, yet these Republicans have already balked on anything he is going to say. Party of No strikes again

    September 8, 2011 04:17 pm at 4:17 pm |
  25. J-NW

    GOP – the big tent.. rightwing fascists, KKK-Confederates, Nazis,.. all with a common cause: greed and hate. The civil war rages on. And the non-GOP moderates are to the boiling point. GOP is destroying America and it will result in Third-world status. Obnoxious idiots.

    September 8, 2011 04:18 pm at 4:18 pm |
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