Liveblog: President Obama addresses joint congressional session on jobs
September 8th, 2011
06:00 PM ET
12 years ago

Liveblog: President Obama addresses joint congressional session on jobs

Washington (CNN) - President Barack Obama will address a joint session of Congress Thursday and discuss his plan to stimulate national job growth.

8:27 p.m. ET-@EricCantor Good people can disagree. We should work together to find common ground and quickly pass where we agree to grow this economy. #JobsNow

8:14 p.m. ET
- @SenatorReid Pres. Obama's pckg of common-sense, bipartisan proposals will present a litmus test to Rs

8:10 p.m. ET-@Barack Obama Our take: This isn’t just about jobs—it’s about basic fairness and security for middle-class families who work hard and play by the rules.

7:59 p.m. ET-@teapartynation Obama's speech is the worst pre game show ever!

7:48 p.m. ET
-@EricCantor There are certainly goals the President outlined that we can work with him on. We should work quickly to pass the areas where we agree.

7:47 p.m. ET-@GOPWhip I hope POTUS & Dems will work with us & support the GOP plan for #jobs & economic growth. #JobsNow

7:41 p.m. ET–President Obama: I ask every American who agrees to lift your voice and tell the people who are gathered here tonight that you want action now. Tell Washington that doing nothing is not an option. Remind us that if we act as one nation, and one people, we have it within our power to meet this challenge.

President Kennedy once said, “Our problems are man-made – therefore they can be solved by man. And man can be as big as he wants.”

These are difficult years for our country. But we are Americans. We are tougher than the times that we live in, and we are bigger than our politics have been. So let’s meet the moment. Let’s get to work, and show the world once again why the United States of America remains the greatest nation on Earth. Thank you, God bless you, and may God bless the United States of America.

Read the full liveblog after the jump


7:40 p.m. ET–President Obama: Some of them are living week to week; paycheck to paycheck; even day to day. They need help, and they need it now.

I don’t pretend that this plan will solve all our problems. It shouldn’t be, nor will it be, the last plan of action we propose. What’s guided us from the start of this crisis hasn’t been the search for a silver bullet. It’s been a commitment to stay at it – to be persistent – to keep trying every new idea that works, and listen to every good proposal, no matter which party comes up with it. Regardless of the arguments we’ve had in the past, regardless of the arguments we’ll have in the future, this plan is the right thing to do right now. You should pass it. And I intend to take that message to every corner of this country.


7:39 p.m. ET–President Obama: I know there’s been a lot of skepticism about whether the politics of the moment will allow us to pass this jobs plan – or any jobs plan. Already, we’re seeing the same old press releases and tweets flying back and forth. Already, the media has proclaimed that it’s impossible to bridge our differences. And maybe some of you have decided that those differences are so great that we can only resolve them at the ballot box.

But know this: the next election is fourteen months away. And the people who sent us here – the people who hired us to work for them – they don’t have the luxury of waiting fourteen months.

7:38 p.m. ET–President Obama: Every proposal I’ve laid out tonight is the kind that’s been supported by Democrats and Republicans in the past. Every proposal I’ve laid out tonight will be paid for. And every proposal is designed to meet the urgent needs of our people and our communities.


7:37 p.m. ET–President Obama: How many jobs would it have cost us if past Congresses decided not to support the basic research that led to the Internet and the computer chip? What kind of country would this be if this Chamber had voted down Social Security or Medicare just because it violated some rigid idea about what government could or could not do? How many Americans would have suffered as a result?

No single individual built America on their own. We built it together. We have been, and always will be, one nation, under God, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all; a nation with responsibilities to ourselves and with responsibilities to one another. Members of Congress, it is time for us to meet our responsibilities.

7:36 p.m. ET–President Obama: In fact, this larger notion that the only thing we can do to restore prosperity is just dismantle government, refund everyone’s money, let everyone write their own rules, and tell everyone they’re on their own – that’s not who we are. That’s not the story of America.

Yes, we are rugged individualists. Yes, we are strong and self-reliant. And it has been the drive and initiative of our workers and entrepreneurs that has made this economy the engine and envy of the world.

But there has always been another thread running throughout our history – a belief that we are all connected; and that there are some things we can only do together, as a nation.

We all remember Abraham Lincoln as the leader who saved our Union. But in the middle of a Civil War, he was also a leader who looked to the future – a Republican president who mobilized government to build the transcontinental railroad; launch the National Academy of Sciences; and set up the first land grant colleges. And leaders of both parties have followed the example he set.

Ask yourselves – where would we be right now if the people who sat here before us decided not to build our highways and our bridges; our dams and our airports? What would this country be like if we had chosen not to spend money on public high schools, or research universities, or community colleges? Millions of returning heroes, including my grandfather, had the opportunity to go to school because of the GI Bill. Where would we be if they hadn’t had that chance?

7:35 p.m. ET
–President Obama: We shouldn’t be in a race to the bottom, where we try to offer the cheapest labor and the worst pollution standards. America should be in a race to the top. And I believe that’s a race we can win.


7:35 p.m. ET-@AnnCensky Obama is echoing Bernanke from earlier today. Don't sacrifice the recovery now to slash spending over the long haul

7:35 p.m. ET
–President Obama: I reject the idea that we need to ask people to choose between their jobs and their safety. I reject the argument that says for the economy to grow, we have to roll back protections that ban hidden fees by credit card companies, or rules that keep our kids from being exposed to mercury, or laws that prevent the health insurance industry from shortchanging patients. I reject the idea that we have to strip away collective bargaining rights to compete in a global economy.


7:34 p.m. ET–President Obama: But what we can’t do – what I won’t do – is let this economic crisis be used as an excuse to wipe out the basic protections that Americans have counted on for decades.

7:34 p.m. ET-@RickSantorum The President said “This isn’t class warfare,” in one breath. Then said “the rich need pay their fair share.” We’re not fooled anymore.


7:33 p.m. ET–President Obama: Well, I agree that we can’t afford wasteful spending, and I will continue to work with Congress to get rid of it. And I agree that there are some rules and regulations that put an unnecessary burden on businesses at a time when they can least afford it. That’s why I ordered a review of all government regulations. So far, we’ve identified over 500 reforms, which will save billions of dollars over the next few years. We should have no more regulation than the health, safety, and security of the American people require. Every rule should meet that common sense test.

7:33 p.m. ET-@rolandsmartin I haven't seen POTUS give a speech with this much conviction in a long time. Now him & his team need to keep this...


7:32 p.m. ET–President Obama: If we provide the right incentives and support – and if we make sure our trading partners play by the rules – we can be the ones to build everything from fuel-efficient cars to advanced biofuels to semiconductors that are sold all over the world. That’s how America can be number one again. That’s how America will be number one again.

7:31 p.m. ET–President Obama: And on all of our efforts to strengthen competitiveness, we need to look for ways to work side-by-side with America’s businesses. That’s why I’ve brought together a Jobs Council of leaders from different industries who are developing a wide range of new ideas to help companies grow and create jobs.

Already, we’ve mobilized business leaders to train 10,000 American engineers a year, by providing company internships and training. Other businesses are covering tuition for workers who learn new skills at community colleges. And we’re going to make sure the next generation of manufacturing takes root not in China or Europe, but right here, in the United States of America.


7:31 p.m. ET
–President Obama: Other steps will require Congressional action. Today you passed reform that will speed up the outdated patent process, so that entrepreneurs can turn a new idea into a new business as quickly as possible. That’s the kind of action we need. Now it’s time to clear the way for a series of trade agreements that would make it easier for American companies to sell their products in Panama, Colombia, and South Korea – while also helping the workers whose jobs have been affected by global competition. If Americans can buy Kias and Hyundais, I want to see folks in South Korea driving Fords and Chevys and Chryslers. I want to see more products sold around the world stamped with three proud words: “Made in America.”

7:30 p.m. ET-@RickSantorum Didn't the President control both houses of congress while our economy was tanking?

7:30 p.m. ET-@deirdrewalshcnn Just up and running today, the Super committee's task just got tougher – President just added another $450 b to the $1.5 T they need to cut

7:30 p.m. ET–President Obama: We’re also planning to cut away the red tape that prevents too many rapidly-growing start-up companies from raising capital and going public. And to help responsible homeowners, we’re going to work with Federal housing agencies to help more people refinance their mortgages at interest rates that are now near 4% a step–I know this is something you guys are for– a step that can put more than $2,000 a year in a family’s pocket, and give a lift to an economy still burdened by the drop in housing prices.

7:29 p.m. ET-@CRrileyCNN Tax cuts for small biz: $70 billion. Payroll tax holiday: $175 billion. Unemployment benefit ext: $49 billion

7:29 p.m. ET–President Obama: The American Jobs Act answers the urgent need to create jobs right away. But we can’t stop there. As I’ve argued since I ran for this office, we have to look beyond the immediate crisis and start building an economy that lasts into the future – an economy that creates good, middle-class jobs that pay well and offer security. We now live in a world where technology has made it possible for companies to take their business anywhere. If we want them to start here and stay here and hire here, we have to be able to out-build, out-educate, and out-innovate every other country on Earth.

This task, of making America more competitive for the long haul, is a job for all of us. For government and for private companies. For states and for local communities – and for every American citizen. All of us will have to up our game. All of us will have to change the way we do business.

My administration can and will take some steps to improve our competitiveness on our own. For example, if you’re a small business owner who has a contract with the federal government, we’re going to make sure you get paid a lot faster than you do now.

7:27 p.m. ET–President Obama: So we can reduce this deficit, pay down our debt, and pay for this jobs plan in the process. But in order to do this, we have to decide what our priorities are. We have to ask ourselves, “What’s the best way to grow the economy and create jobs?”

Should we keep tax loopholes for oil companies? Or should we use that money to give small business owners a tax credit when they hire new workers? Because we can’t afford to do both. Should we keep tax breaks for millionaires and billionaires? Or should we put teachers back to work so our kids can graduate ready for college and good jobs? Right now, we can’t afford to do both. This isn’t political grandstanding. This isn’t class warfare. This is simple math. These are real choices that we have to make. And I’m pretty sure I know what most Americans would choose. It’s not even close. And it’s time for us to do what’s right for our future.

7:27 p.m. ET-@YellinCNN POTUS tries to use the Republicans tax pledge against them jujitsu sell the employee payroll tax cut. Will it work?


7:26 p.m. ET–President Obama: I’ll also offer ideas to reform a corporate tax code that stands as a monument to special interest influence in Washington. By eliminating pages of loopholes and deductions, we can lower one of the highest corporate tax rates in the world. Our tax code shouldn’t give an advantage to companies that can afford the best-connected lobbyists. It should give an advantage to companies that invest and create jobs here in America.

7:26 p.m. ET–President Obama: And I believe the vast majority of wealthy Americans and CEOs are willing to do just that, if it helps the economy grow and gets our fiscal house in order.


7:25 p.m. ET–President Obama: I’m also well aware that there are many Republicans who don’t believe we should raise taxes on those who are most fortunate and can best afford it. But here is what every American knows. While most people in this country struggle to make ends meet, a few of the most affluent citizens and corporations enjoy tax breaks and loopholes that nobody else gets. Right now, Warren Buffet pays a lower tax rate than his secretary – an outrage he has asked us to fix. We need a tax code where everyone gets a fair shake, and everybody pays their fair share.

7:24 p.m. ET-@EWErickson I feel like we're listening to Fluff the Magic Demagogue.

(Democrats and Republicans rise and applaud)

7:24 p.m. ET–President Obama: What’s more, the spending cuts wouldn’t happen so abruptly that they’d be a drag on our economy, or prevent us from helping small business and middle-class families get back on their feet right away. Now, I realize there are some in my party who don’t think we should make any changes at all to Medicare and Medicaid, and I understand their concerns. But here’s the truth. Millions of Americans rely on Medicare in their retirement. And millions more will do so in the future. They pay for this benefit during their working years. They earn it. But with an aging population and rising health care costs, we are spending too fast to sustain the program. And if we don’t gradually reform the system while protecting current beneficiaries, it won’t be there when future retirees need it. We have to reform Medicare to strengthen it.

7:24 p.m. ET-@HowardKurtz Obama mentions vets, teachers, disadvantaged young people, unemployed, the middle class–trying to put a face on what GOP sees as stimulus


7:23 p.m. ET–President Obama: This approach is basically the one I’ve been advocating for months. In addition to the trillion dollars of spending cuts I’ve already signed into law, it’s a balanced plan that would reduce the deficit by making additional spending cuts; by making modest adjustments to health care programs like Medicare and Medicaid; and by reforming our tax code in a way that asks the wealthiest Americans and biggest corporations to pay their fair share.

7:23 p.m. ET–President Obama: This is the American Jobs Act. It will lead to new jobs for construction workers, teachers, veterans, first responders, young people and the long-term unemployed. It will provide tax credits to companies that hire new workers, tax relief for small business owners, and tax cuts for the middle-class. And here’s the other thing I want the American people to know: the American Jobs Act will not add to the deficit. It will be paid for. And here’s how:

The agreement we passed in July will cut government spending by about $1 trillion over the next ten years. It also charges this Congress to come up with an additional $1.5 trillion in savings by Christmas. Tonight, I’m asking you to increase that amount so that it covers the full cost of the American Jobs Act. And a week from Monday, I’ll be releasing a more ambitious deficit plan – a plan that will not only cover the cost of this jobs bill, but stabilize our debt in the long run.


7:22 p.m. ET–President Obama: Pass this jobs bill, and the typical working family will get a fifteen hundred dollar tax cut next year. Fifteen hundred dollars that would have been taken out of your paycheck will go right into your pocket. This expands on the tax cut that Democrats and Republicans already passed for this year. If we allow that tax cut to expire – if we refuse to act – middle-class families will get hit with a tax increase at the worst possible time. We cannot let that happen. I know some of you have sworn oaths to never raise any taxes on anyone for as long as you live. Now is not the time to carve out an exception and raise middle-class taxes, which is why you should pass this bill right away.

7:21 p.m. ET–President Obama: Pass this jobs bill, and companies will get a $4,000 tax credit if they hire anyone who has spent more than six months looking for a job. We have to do more to help the long-term unemployed in their search for work. This jobs plan builds on a program in Georgia that several Republican leaders have highlighted, where people who collect unemployment insurance participate in temporary work as a way to build their skills while they look for a permanent job. The plan also extends unemployment insurance for another year. If the millions of unemployed Americans stopped getting this insurance, and stopped using that money for basic necessities, it would be a devastating blow to this economy. Democrats and Republicans in this Chamber have supported unemployment insurance plenty of times in the past. At this time of prolonged hardship, you should pass it again – right away.

7:21 p.m. ET - @deirdrewalshcnn Wisc Rep Paul Ryan sporting a Packers tie tonight


7:20 p.m. ET–President Obama: Pass this bill, and hundreds of thousands of disadvantaged young people will have the hope and dignity of a summer job next year. And their parents, low-income Americans who desperately want to work, will have more ladders out of poverty.

Pass this jobs bill, and companies will get a $4,000 tax credit if they hire anyone who has spent more than six months looking for a job.

7:20 p.m. ET-@KateBolduanCNN Many of the longest, loudest applause lines for Dems comes when Pres talks about schools and keeping teachers on the job

7:19 p.m. ET–President Obama: Pass this jobs bill, and companies will get extra tax credits if they hire America’s veterans. We ask these men and women to leave their careers, leave their families, and risk their lives to fight for our country. The last thing they should have to do is fight for a job when they come home.

7:19 p.m. ET - @rolandsmartin POTUS was quick to smack the political pundits who spent a lot of time saying what this speech means for him. It's about the unemployed!


7:18 p.m. ET–President Obama: Pass this jobs bill, and thousands of teachers in every state will go back to work. These are the men and women charged with preparing our children for a world where the competition has never been tougher. But while they’re adding teachers in places like South Korea, we’re laying them off in droves. It’s unfair to our kids. It undermines their future and ours. And it has to stop. Pass this jobs bill, and put our teachers back in the classroom where they belong.


7:18 p.m. ET
–President Obama: This idea came from a bill written by a Texas Republican and a Massachusetts Democrat. The idea for a big boost in construction is supported by America’s largest business organization and America’s largest labor organization. It’s the kind of proposal that’s been supported in the past by Democrats and Republicans alike. You should pass it right away.

7:18 p.m. ET- @streitfeldcnn Former House Speaker Newt Gingrich watches Pres Obama's jobs speech in a college pub before his town hall in Henniker. #NH #FITN


7:17 p.m. ET–President Obama: The American Jobs Act will repair and modernize at least 35,000 schools. It will put people to work right now fixing roofs and windows; installing science labs and high-speed internet in classrooms all across this country. It will rehabilitate homes and businesses in communities hit hardest by foreclosures. It will jumpstart thousands of transportation projects across the country. And to make sure the money is properly spent and for good purposes, we’re building on reforms we’ve already put in place. No more earmarks. No more boondoggles. No more bridges to nowhere. We’re cutting the red tape that prevents some of these projects from getting started as quickly as possible. And we’ll set up an independent fund to attract private dollars and issue loans based on two criteria: how badly a construction project is needed and how much good it would do for the economy.


7:16 p.m. ET–President Obama: There are private construction companies all across America just waiting to get to work. There’s a bridge that needs repair between Ohio and Kentucky that’s on one of the busiest trucking routes in North America. A public transit project in Houston that will help clear up one of the worst areas of traffic in the country. And there are schools throughout this country that desperately need renovating. How can we expect our kids to do their best in places that are literally falling apart? This is America. Every child deserves a great school – and we can give it to them, if we act now.

7:16 p.m. ET- @AnnCensky According to @SBAgov, small businesses have generated 64% of net new jobs over the past 15 years


7:15 p.m. ET–President Obama: It’s not just Democrats who have supported this kind of proposal. Fifty House Republicans have proposed the same payroll tax cut that’s in this plan. You should pass it right away.

Pass this jobs bill, and we can put people to work rebuilding America. Everyone here knows that we have badly decaying roads and bridges all over this country. Our highways are clogged with traffic. Our skies are the most congested in the world.

This is inexcusable. Building a world-class transportation system is part of what made us an economic superpower. And now we’re going to sit back and watch China build newer airports and faster railroads? At a time when millions of unemployed construction workers could build them right here in America?

7:14 p.m. ET-@RNCResearch Since Obama’s $825 billion stimulus 1.7 million jobs lost and unemp rate increased from 8.2% to 9.1%


7:14 p.m. ET–President Obama: Everyone here knows that small businesses are where most new jobs begin. And you know that while corporate profits have come roaring back, smaller companies haven’t. So for everyone who speaks so passionately about making life easier for “job creators,” this plan is for you.

Pass this jobs bill, and starting tomorrow, small businesses will get a tax cut if they hire new workers or raise workers’ wages. Pass this jobs bill, and all small business owners will also see their payroll taxes cut in half next year. If you have 50 employees making an average salary, that’s an $80,000 tax cut. And all businesses will be able to continue writing off the investments they make in 2012.


7:13p.m. ET–President Obama: It will provide a jolt to an economy that has stalled, and give companies confidence that if they invest and hire, there will be customers for their products and services. You should pass this jobs plan right away.


7:13 p.m. ET–President Obama: The purpose of the American Jobs Act is simple: to put more people back to work and more money in the pockets of those who are working. It will create more jobs for construction workers, more jobs for teachers, more jobs for veterans, and more jobs for the long-term unemployed. It will provide a tax break for companies who hire new workers, and it will cut payroll taxes in half for every working American and every small business.


7:12 p.m. ET–President Obama: The question is whether, in the face of an ongoing national crisis, we can stop the political circus and actually do something to help the economy; whether we can restore some of the fairness and security that has defined this nation since our beginning.

Those of us here tonight can’t solve all of our nation’s woes. Ultimately, our recovery will be driven not by Washington, but by our businesses and our workers. But we can help. We can make a difference. There are steps we can take right now to improve people’s lives.

I am sending this Congress a plan that you should pass right away. It’s called the American Jobs Act. There should be nothing controversial about this piece of legislation. Everything in here is the kind of proposal that’s been supported by both Democrats and Republicans – including many who sit here tonight. And everything in this bill will be paid for. Everything.

7:12 p.m. ET- @deirdrewalshcnn RT @jamiedupree ONE NOTE- For the first time in many years, no House Pages on the floor for a speech by a President

7:11 p.m. ET–President Obama: The people of this country work hard to meet their responsibilities. The question tonight is whether we’ll meet ours.


7:10 p.m. ET–President Obama: But the millions of Americans who are watching right now: they don’t care about politics. They have real life concerns. Many have spent months looking for work. Others are doing their best just to scrape by – giving up nights out with the family to save on gas or make the mortgage; postponing retirement to send a kid to college.

These men and women grew up with faith in an America where hard work and responsibility paid off. They believed in a country where everyone gets a fair shake and does their fair share – where if you stepped up, did your job, and were loyal to your company, that loyalty would be rewarded with a decent salary and good benefits; maybe a raise once in awhile. If you did the right thing, you could make it in America.

But for decades now, Americans have watched that compact erode. They have seen the deck too often stacked against them. And they know that Washington has not always put their interests first.

7:09 p.m. ET–President Obama: Mr. Speaker, Mr. Vice President, Members of Congress, and fellow Americans:

Tonight we meet at an urgent time for our country. We continue to face an economic crisis that has left millions of our neighbors jobless, and a political crisis that has made things worse.

This past week, reporters have been asking “What will this speech mean for the President? What will it mean for Congress? How will it affect their polls, and the next election?”

7:07 p.m. ET- @deirdrewalshcnn Rep Woolsey tells the President as he heads into House chamber "be bold and brave"

7:05 p.m. ET–President Barack Obama enters the chamber.

7:04 p.m. ET–CNN Congressional Correspondent Kate Bolduan: "Just spotted former Rep. Wu (D-Oregon) in the chamber. He resigned after the debt ceiling vote amid scandal involving allegations of an inappropriate relationship with daughter of family friend. Former members retain floor privileges."

6:58 p.m. ET–First lady Michelle Obama takes her seat.

6:57 p.m. ET
-@THEHermanCain Speech time & I never got a call from the President. Figured he'd want to know how I created millions of jobs for 40 years.

6:51 p.m. ET–CNN Chief White House Correspondent Jessica Yellin: "A White House official confirms the President called Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell to brief him on the speech today…as well as Speaker Boehner."

6:43 p.m. ET–CNN Chief White House Correspondent Jessica Yellin: "Per a Republican House leadership aide the President called Speaker Boehner around 3:45pm to preview the speech this afternoon."

6:20 p.m. ET-@deirdrewalshcnn Obama also will say his proposal includes things both Rs and Ds have supported, "Everything in this bill will be paid for. Everything."

6:20 p.m. ET
-@SenatorDurbin In his address to Congress, the President should call for investment in areas that create #jobs: infrastructure, training and research.

6:16 p.m. ET.-@GOPWhip Americans work hard everyday to meet their responsibilities. Now it is time for Washington to do the same. #JobsNow

6:10 p.m. ET-@pfeiffer44 POTUS tonight: Our recovery will be driven not by Washington,but by our businesses and our workers.But we can help.We can make a difference

6:09 p.m. ET-@pfeiffer44 POTUS will say tonight: The people of this country work hard to meet their responsibilities.The question tonight is whether we’ll meet ours

6:04 p.m. ET-@BarackObama I'm heading to Congress to present them with the American Jobs Act. Please watch-and join me in urging them to act. -BO
(Tweets from the president are signed -BO)

6:00 p.m. ET–The White House released excerpts of the speech ahead of its scheduled delivery at 7 p.m. ET.

The people of this country work hard to meet their responsibilities. The question tonight is whether we’ll meet ours. The question is whether, in the face of an ongoing national crisis, we can stop the political circus and actually do something to help the economy; whether we can restore some of the fairness and security that has defined this nation since our beginning.
Those of us here tonight cannot solve all of our nation’s woes. Ultimately, our recovery will be driven not by Washington, but by our businesses and our workers. But we can help. We can make a difference. There are steps we can take right now to improve people’s lives.I am sending this Congress a plan that you should pass right away. It’s called the American Jobs Act. There should be nothing controversial about this piece of legislation. Everything in here is the kind of proposal that’s been supported by both Democrats and Republicans – including many who sit here tonight. And everything in this bill will be paid for. Everything.The purpose of the American Jobs Act is simple: to put more people back to work and more money in the pockets of those who are working. It will create more jobs for construction workers, more jobs for teachers, more jobs for veterans, and more jobs for the long-term unemployed. It will provide a tax break for companies who hire new workers, and it will cut payroll taxes in half for every working American and every small business. It will provide a jolt to an economy that has stalled, and give companies confidence that if they invest and hire, there will be customers for their products and services. You should pass this jobs plan right away.

Filed under: Congress • Economy • Jobs • President Obama
soundoff (265 Responses)
  1. Lynda/Minnesota

    Sorry, Boehner Incorporated, I've given you and your party probably as many months as your party gave Barack Obama to turn things around. I speak as a long time former Republican - cast my first vote for Richard Nixon, and voted Republican until Bush's second term, during which for the first time in my life, I sat out a Presidential election. Not proud of that, but between Bush screwing up the country, and Pawlenty screwing up my state, I couldn't see my way to the voting booth. What's happening within the Grand Old Party shames me. It really does. I hold you responsible. You represent what little leadership is left in the party. Good luck keeping it together. Fact is, I don't trust you (or the other corporate stooges which now control the party) any further than I would trust a barking dog foaming from the mouth. Which is all that is left in the GOP: rabid barking. BTW: I will once again be voting for President Obama. I really do wish you would sit down and work WITH the guy, instead of AGAINST him.

    September 9, 2011 10:28 am at 10:28 am |
  2. EatRunDive

    Politics IS class warfare. There is a reason that one party is primarily associated with the rich and the other the poor. Frankly, if you aren't making 6 figures and you vote Republican, you've been duped.

    September 9, 2011 10:43 am at 10:43 am |
  3. ja

    a certian segment of ameican citizens has exacted terror upon america, far worst than any foreign terrorist group, all in the name of intolerance, the senators than publicly stated they would watch a football game instead of be at the presidential addres is one such group, what happened to civility

    September 9, 2011 10:46 am at 10:46 am |
  4. Sniffit

    "The monies that fund that job are taken directly from and are therefore removed from the private sector of the economy."

    You forgot the rest of the sentence: "and given to the public employee in the form of wages/salary, who then goes out and spends them into the economy."

    Obama nailed it last night and shoved it right up the Grand Old Patoot. He made a couple speech-type mistakes by not stating the total amount, but that's fairly covered by the demand that it be paid for by adding to the cuts the "super committee" must come up with. I haven't seen Boehner look that much like he's suffering indigestion for months. People yammering that it was nothing more than "tax and spend" clearly paid no attention to the speech other than cherry-picking the parts they didn't like to assuage their confirmation bias: he talked more about all the tax cuts for small businesses and directed at incentivizing hiring than any other parts of his plan...and he stated specific dollar amounts for those cuts along with other specifics about them. Reading the comments here confirms one thing and one thing only...there are lpenty of people out there who, just like the GOP in Congress, simply won't agree with anything Obama says no matter what it is. They have no desire to talk substantively, only rhetorically. Have fun trying to make everyone think he's "out campaigning" and "on vacation" while he goes to the four corners of the country to gather support for his plan, guys...watching you squirm is going to be truly entertaining.

    September 9, 2011 10:48 am at 10:48 am |
  5. The Other Dale

    Interesting – the people who have actually HEARD the speech are calling it a return to a strong Truman-like president, the first time in ages. Those that didn't are giving the same ol rhetoric of "telepromptor" (wow, clever – a prepared speech that is read from a telepromptor, how can you go wrong attacking Obama for that?) slurs, and general crybaby whinning that is typical of those with their heads stuck in the sands. Heck, even some of the Republicans have had to back off that spew because the speech worked. Good speech – at least for those that actually listened.

    September 9, 2011 11:08 am at 11:08 am |
  6. Rickster

    What a worthless bag of wind President Zero is. Great plan....let's spend a whole bunch more money, even though we are broke, and somebody else will figure out how to pay for it later. Another failure for the worst president ever.

    September 9, 2011 11:09 am at 11:09 am |
  7. Sniffit

    "what happened to civility"

    The Civil War (they're still trying to fight it).

    September 9, 2011 11:21 am at 11:21 am |
  8. bill

    obama is in way over his head.

    September 9, 2011 11:29 am at 11:29 am |
  9. Woman In California

    Good speech Mr. President. It drives the [R]s crazy when you speak because they KNOW they can't match your skills as a orator, or intelligence. Did anyone see Boehner's face when the president mentioned corporations paying their fair share? He did not stand or clap. Yes, we know where the repubs. interests are and it's not America's middle class.

    September 9, 2011 11:46 am at 11:46 am |
  10. Expat American

    It’s funny how many folks out there attack the president for not getting them out of a situation that the Republicans actually put them in; while the Republicans who actually placed them in said predicament continue to offer solutions which will only perpetuate the dire straits of those attacking the President.

    September 9, 2011 11:52 am at 11:52 am |
  11. Obama vs Obama

    THE NEW JOB PLAN: "Pass this job-bill right away or else I will take it to every corner of the country to COMPLAIN...oops..
    I mean to campaign"!..This address to Congress was all about Obama vs Obama to jump-start his 2012 re-election campaiign and his vision to jop creation is this: Cut taxes for the middle class, extend payroll taxes, extend unempoyment
    insurance benefit, build roads, build schools, spend-build, build-spend, other words Pres Obama is finally revealing
    his chronic addiction to spending to create jobs, will not add to the deficit/debt because everything in Obamas' bill will be../ not is paid for....And how will it be done..? By raising taxes sometime soon and cutting spending in the
    next ten years....Really? WAke-up, wake-up America before its too late......!!!!

    September 9, 2011 12:19 pm at 12:19 pm |
  12. Jaywing

    Let's not forget these fine GOP Americans who FAILED to do the job we elected them to do and continued their political grandstanding instead of working for us: Rep. Paul Broun, R-Ga., tweeted a live town hall from his office, said his spokeswoman, Meredith Griffanti. And Rep. Joe Walsh, R-Ill., was home in the Chicago suburbs hosting a meeting with small business owners. South Carolina Republican Sen. Jim DeMint, who calls himself "Sen. Tea Party," had planned to skip town before the speech, citing a meeting in Charleston, S.C., with officials and employees of the Boeing Co. Sen. David Vitter, R-La., planned to listen carefully from home, where he wanted to watch the New Orleans Saints play the Green Bay Packers. Anyone notice they're all Republicans! All still saying NO to anything and everything, especially jobs. Pathetic!

    September 9, 2011 12:28 pm at 12:28 pm |
  13. Rudy NYC

    Fair is Fair wrote:
    The only "job" the government can "create" is a government job. The monies that fund that job are taken directly from and are therefore removed from the private sector of the economy. That approach is completely unsustainable.
    That is pure nonsense. Where does it go if they do not spend it? The workers go out and *spend* the money, which gets spent again and again, usually generating revenue each time the dollar is spent. Give that same dollar to the wealthy, and where does it go? I dunno. But, I do know that it doesn't create jobs. A tax cut is not going to cause someone to decide, "I think I will create a job with this *personal* tax cut." Liberal favor tax cuts aimed at businesses, not the individual.

    Give out the tax break for actually creating jobs. The Bush Tax Cuts didn't create jobs. The recession the country was experiencing was caused by Einstein tampering with the prime rate to slow economic growth. Does "irrational exuberance" ring a bell? He raised the rates like over a dozen times in 6 months, or something stupid like that. The economy recovered when the rates were lowered, and the growth we saw during the Clinton years resumed. The Bush Tax Cuts sucked money out of the economy.

    September 9, 2011 03:02 pm at 3:02 pm |
  14. Rudy NYC

    phoenix86 wrote:
    The market promptly responded by dropping almost 200 points.
    "The market promptly responded by dropping almost 200 points. "

    Your misleading implications have been noted. The market is reacting to Europe and Asia. BTW, our economy and the global economy are intimately intertwined into a symbiotic existence. One cannot survive without the other. Once cannot recover without the other.

    September 9, 2011 03:10 pm at 3:10 pm |
  15. Rudy NYC

    Diana wrote:
    Tax North American companies who have their product made overseas. Bring the cost of their imports up to what it would cost to make over here.
    That's not it. They manufacture overseas because it is closer to the consumer, and the emerging markets in India and China. The demand for manufactured goods used to be mainly North America and Europe.

    The global economy has created demand globally. They manufacture there because they are charged the same taxes that you suggest by those other countries. They whine about the high cost of labor, when the truth is the high cost of shipping fragile goods to customers and import tariffs.

    The biggest problem with jobs moving overseas are the tax loop holes that encourage companies to do it. US corporations can deduct *all* foreign taxes off of their US taxes. In other words, they can manufacture overseas tax-free, while they must pay taxes here.

    September 9, 2011 03:20 pm at 3:20 pm |
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