Appearing at University at Albany’s College of Nanoscale Science and Engineering today, President Barack Obama unveiled his “To Do List” for Congress to help spur economic recovery.
“Today, I’m announcing a handy little to do list that we put together for Congress,” he said. “It’s about the size of a Post-It-Note, so every member of Congress should have time to read it. … Hopefully we’ll be checking off the list just like when Michelle gives me a list, I check it off.”
President Obama’s “to do list” was made up of proposals he has pushed in the pass that failed in the face of Republican opposition including; allowing a new hire tax credit for small businesses, helping homeowners refinance at lower interest rates, extending the Production Tax Credit to green energy firms, eliminating tax incentives for companies that outsource jobs overseas and creating a Veterans Job Corps. President Obama described the items on his list as initiatives that would create jobs and help the economy that were dropped when he sent his jobs bill to Congress last September because Republicans repeatedly “got together and said no.”
The president said he hoped Republican lawmakers would help pass the items on his list even if they “are still saying no to some of the bigger proposals” in his jobs plan because the items on the list are “traditionally ideas that have had bipartisan support.”
“I know this is an election year, but it’s not an excuse for inaction,” President Obama said. “Six months is plenty of time for Democrats and Republicans to get together and do the right thing–taking steps that will spur additional job creation right now. Just saying no to ideas that we know will help our economy isn’t an option.”
President Obama said the country’s economy is “making progress, but everybody knows we need to do more.” He also attempted to shoot down criticism from conservatives that his economic policies are causing the government to grow too large by pointing out that government employment rose after the recessions during the terms of Ronald Reagan and both Bushes.
“The only time government employment has gone down in a recession has been under me,” he said. “I make that point just so you don’t buy into that whole bloated goverment argument that you hear.”
President Obama also took the opportunity to reiterate his support for his student loan bill and the transportation bill, which he said had the support of both parties.
“There are actually seven items on the ‘To Do List,’” President Obama said. “Two of them are old business and folks have already said they want to get them done.”