Most Americans seemed to understand that the President stepped into an economic and deep recession crisis that this country had not experienced since the great depression in the 1930’s.  Middle class Americans have been under attack for decades and people currently living in poverty are at the highest it’s ever been over the past few years.  To recover from this economic crisis, the economy must be rebuilt in a fair and effective way.  The first step in rebuilding our fractured economy has to begin with getting people back to work while simultaneously implementing an infrastructure to sustain ongoing growth.  To create jobs, the President recently submitted the American Jobs Act which he outlined before the American people in a Joint Session of Congress. According to the President, the purpose of the American Jobs Act is simple: put more people back to work and put more money in the pockets of working Americans. And it would do so without adding a dime to the deficit.  The following is a brief synopsis of a few of the Bill’s provisions:

1.Tax Cuts to Help America’s Small Businesses Hire and Grow

The President’s plan will cut in half the taxes paid by businesses on their first $5 million in payroll, targeting the benefit to the 98 percent of firms that have payroll below this threshold.

The President’s plan will completely eliminate payroll taxes for firms that increase their payroll by adding new workers or increasing the wages of their current worker (the benefit is capped at the first $50 million in payroll increases).

2. Putting Workers Back on the Job While Rebuilding and Modernizing America

This provides tax credits from $5,600 to $9,600 to encourage the hiring of unemployed veterans.

Preventing up to 280,000 teacher layoffs, while keeping cops and firefighters on the job.

Modernizing at least 35,000 public schools across the country, supporting new science labs, Internet-ready classrooms and renovations at schools across the country, in rural and urban areas.

3. Pathways Back to Work for Americans Looking for Jobs.

As part of an extension of unemployment insurance to prevent 5 million Americans looking for work from losing their benefits, the President’s plan includes innovative work-based reforms to prevent layoffs and give states greater flexibility to use Unemployment Insurance funds to best support job-seekers, including: (1) Work-Sharing; (2) Unemployment Insurance for workers whose employers choose work-sharing over layoffs; (3) The plan builds on and improves innovative state programs where those displaced take temporary, voluntary work or pursue on-the-job training; (4) States will also be empowered to implement wage insurance to help reemploy older workers and programs that make it easier for unemployed workers to start their own businesses; (5) A$4,000 tax credit to employers for hiring long-term unemployed workers; (6) Prohibiting employers from discriminating against unemployed workers when hiring; and (7) Expanding job opportunities for low-income youth and adults through a fund for successful approaches for subsidized employment, innovative training programs and summer/year-round jobs for youth.

4. Tax Relief for Every American Worker and Family

The President’s plan will expand the payroll tax cut passed last year to cut workers payroll taxes in half in 2012 – providing a $1,500 tax cut to the typical American family, without negatively impacting the Social Security Trust Fund.  The plan also allows more Americans to refinance their mortgages at todays near 4 percent interest rates, which can put more than $2,000 a year in a family’s pocket.

To ensure that the American Jobs Act is fully paid for, the President has called on the Joint Committee to come up with additional deficit reduction necessary to pay for the Act and still meet its deficit target.  The estimated cost of the Bill is 447 Billion Dollars.  Here is a link for a more detailed description of the Bill http://www.whitehouse.gov/the-press-office/2011/09/08/fact-sheet-american-jobs-act

I believe that most logical and rational individuals would conclude that this Bill seems like an excellent start in resolving our economic dilemma.  But even though most if not all of the Bill’s provisions received past support of the Republicans, apparently nobody informed Tea Party Republican Rep. Louis Gohmert of Texas who doesn’t like any parts of the bill especially the part dealing with the unemployed.  “We’re adding in this bill a new protected class called ‘unemployed,'” Gohmert said on the floor of the House.”I think this will help trial lawyers who are not having enough work. We heard from our friends across the aisle, 14 million people out of work — that’s 14 million new clients.”  The President’s Jobs Bill has a section that would prohibit employers from not hiring someone just because they are jobless.  According to the National Employment Law Project, Gohmert is incorrect: The proposal would not make employment status a protected class like race or sex. It simply bans hiring discrimination against the jobless, and is modeled off of legislation drafted by Democrats in Congress earlier this year.  Gohmert is just another irrational and illogical Republican making up his own “facts”.

As a further element of disrespect, on September 15, 2001, Gohmert introduced his own bill and named it, “The American’s Job Act,” that’s right, the same name as the President’s bill.  Of course, Gohmert’s bill contains only two (2) pages (unlike the 155 pages of the President’s bill), and will accomplish one thing: eliminate the corporate tax.  Seems to me like further confirmation that the Tea Party Republicans do not care about middle-class America.  Ironically,  most of the Tea Party crew are probably part of the middle class.

It is difficult for many logical and rational people to understand why there is so much obstruction within the Republican Party when our country is in economic ruins and its members, especially the Tea Party, don’t seem to care about the American people.  When we send money abroad to help people in other countries, they call that Foreign Aid, but when we try to help our own people, Republicans call it Socialism.  If the Republicans gain control in 2012, their policies will undoubtedly set this country back at least 50 years.  All of the Republican Presidential candidates are consistent in: privatizing Social Security, eliminating Medicare, cutting taxes on the rich, abolishing the Health Care law, and passing the Ryan Budget plan.  If that happens, we can only blame ourselves.

Will the House pass the President’s Jobs Bill or portions of it, probably not as long as the Tea Party is in control unless the American people rally and put the pressure on their congressional leaders!  Government should be by the people, for the people and of the people, not by the Republicans, for the Republicans and of the Republicans.  That’s just my take.

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