Obama, Democrats Blame ‘Do Nothing Congress’ for Job Woes
President Obama and his supporters are well aware that Friday’s jobs report is an ugly mess. But they’re trying to gain the high ground by shifting attention to Congress, highlighting a number of White House jobs proposals that have languished under the GOP-controlled House of Representatives.
In a trip to a Honeywell factory in Minnesota Friday, Obama responded to the dismal news with a speech demanding Congress take action on a variety of measures, including infrastructure investments and aid to state and local governments to prevent teachers, firefighters and police from being laid off, that Republicans have thus far opposed. He also announced a new initiative to encourage private employers to hire returning veterans.
“We’ve got responsibilities that are bigger than an election,” Obama said. “We’ve got responsibilities to you. So my message to Congress is: Now is not the time to play politics, now is not the time to sit on your hands, the American people expect their leaders to work hard no matter what year it is.”
While “the economy still isn’t where it needs to be,” Obama said that enacting his proposals “can make a difference right now.” He also added that, even if the economy perks up, they could provide a “buffer” if things worsen in Europe.