President Obama is set to make a speech Thursday night in which he will lay out his latest jobs plan. It comes less than a week after the government reported a net gain of zero new jobs in August, leaving the national jobless rate stuck at 9.1 percent.
We will not know the exact details of the plan until the President outlines it. Some news reports, though, indicate the plan will call for new federal spending to rebuild roads, bridges, and other infrastructure across the country, which some are calling a second stimulus. The President may also call for continuing a payroll tax cut and a further extension of unemployment benefits.
People in our part of Texas tell me every day that jobs and the economy are their greatest concern. This message was echoed again and again when I visited a variety of local small businesses, met with young professionals and business organizations, and hosted town hall meetings across the 13th district.
Everyone is deeply concerned about what will happen with taxes. Government red tape and regulations, as well as compliance with and enforcement of them, are also creating tremendous uncertainty for local and national businesses alike. They are waiting on the sidelines, reluctant to hire or invest, and the result is a still-failing economy.
I agree with the President that something needs to be done about this serious situation. Where we disagree is which of the policies get it accomplished.
The House has passed more than a dozen pro-growth bills that are currently languishing in the Senate. We also announced an aggressive legislative schedule for the next three months that focuses on the repeal of excessive, job-destroying regulations. These are simple steps we can take that should have strong bipartisan support and will make a big difference.
What will not have bipartisan support is additional, massive government spending. The President's 2009 stimulus bill cost over $800 billion, drove us into record debt, and unemployment actually went up. We do not need to repeat any of that.
Congress and the President have a real opportunity here to work together to get the country back on the right track. We agree the end goal is job creation. We should talk about how to help achieve it by pursuing pro-growth approaches on everything from taxes and trade to transportation and regulation.
I am always interested in your feedback and your suggestions on this topic or any other that matters to you. I hope you will contact me with your opinion via phone, email, letter, website, or Facebook.
Also, please visit the new video mailbox on my website, if you would like, where I will answer more common questions on video from time to time.