Monday, April 26, 2010

Will the President Continue to Ignore Jobs?

We are currently at an important crossroads for President Obama's legacy. Typically, I would say a little over a year into a presidency is an odd time to evaluate the entire four years. However, President Obama has been embarking on a course that will truly define his presidency. The next few months may define his four years in office.

For his entire first year in office, and into this second, the President spent all of his political capital on health care reform. This reform, recently signed into law, will make the most sweeping changes to our health care system ever. It will do so to the tune of over $1 Trillion, and in spite of the fact that most Americans opposed it when it was signed into law, and continue to oppose it a month after its passage. Most Americans believed, and continue to believe, that fixing our economy was much more important than the push for Health Care reform. Trying to get some breathing room for reform, and trying to acknowledge that Americans wanted more of a focus on jobs, the President vowed in his first State of the Union address to focus on job creation. The Guardian UK started their coverage of the address with this:

"Barack Obama bowed to the wave of US public anger over unemployment and other recession-related issues when he promised in his first state of the union speech last night to make the creation of a million jobs the overwhelming priority for the coming year."

What we didn't know then is that job creation would take a backseat to politics in order to get Health Care Reform passed.

Once health care reform passed, many thought President Obama would move to job creation. However, the President seems to have ignored jobs, and forgotten his promise from the State of the Union. Once again, the President has dashed the hopes of American voters. In the month since health care reform passed, the President has tried to pass a new financial regulation bill, has discussed resurrecting the job killing "Cap-and-trade" bill, and has now launched a major campaign aimed at immigration reform. None of these policies will create jobs, and some, such as "cap and trade", will actually cost jobs.

No one is predicting Democrats will gain seats in November. The question is whether or not Democrats will hold onto their majorities in one or both houses. Without the super majorities the Democrats hold, it's going to be very tough to pass any of President Obama's agenda after January of 2011. With the elections about seven months away, there may not be time to pass any major legislation between now and November. This means, after the President's first four years in office, he may look back and only have health care reform to show for his efforts. If Republicans campaign on repealing that reform and win, he may not even have that.

The President campaigned on uniting the country. During his first State of the Union, he promised to focus on job creation. It's time for the President to live up to his promises. He should stop trying to pass an ultra-liberal agenda, and start working to put Americans back to work.


the anonymous guy said...

You're hilarious.

Check out this story, and especially the chart on the left side of the page. Notice where the worst moment in terms of the jobs trend was, and when it started to turn around. Think about what was happening politically at that time.

Obviously, we can't say that the *only* reason things have turned around is Obama's leadership. But it's just dorky to diss Obama on this when the record is now so clear.

Andy D said...

Oops, at first I didn't understand what you were talking about. I had clicked on the unemployment rate tab, and it shows a steady increase of unemployment for most of the same time period. I also seem to remember President Obama saying we must pass the Stimulus bill or unemployment might hit 8%. We passed it, and we have gone far past unemployment. When you said the record is clear, did you account for unemployment? Did you subtract out the temporary census workers? Did you also have think back to when President Bush was being bar-b-q'ed in the press for an unemployment rate of around 5%?

Andy D said...

As an aside, welcome back. I was starting to think you agreed with me on everything now.

the anonymous guy said...


If you can't understand why unemployment would continue to grow even while the rate of job loss decreases...

In any case, it's pretty clear who got us into this mess. And the chart shows pretty clearly who is steering us out.

pack04 said...

I submit this. Mr. Obama announced his campaign for president in February of 2007. He was nominated in August of 2008. Elected in November of 2008. Things have dropped pretty fast since 2007. When it was clear a republican was not going to win the presidency.

Also what do you have to say about the congress that was controlled by the democrats? Seems to me that since they got in power the countries economy has gone to hell.

Or how about we address the intelligent point of view. The president is not as powerful as they think they are, nor as powerful as people give them credit for. I mean are you really saying that Mr. Bush waived his little wand and fired all those people. Do you really think that because Mr. Obama said hire people they did? Do you live in the real world? Economies expand and contract all the time. No matter who was in charge the growth that we were seeing was going to crash. No matter who is in charge the decline will stop and the growth will begin. Stop giving them credit where it is not due.

I will admit that laws can be passed to accelerate/decelerate the decline/growth but governmental leaders cannot, at least in our country at this time, begin or stop a decline/growth movement.