Make us your home page
Instagram

Obama calls on GOP to support small-business aid

WASHINGTON — President Barack Obama exhorted Congress on Monday to make passage of a long-languishing small-business aid package its first order of business when it returns next month from its summer break.

"I ask Senate Republicans to drop the blockade," Obama said in the Rose Garden after meeting with his economic advisers.

Acknowledging that the economy still remains extremely fragile, the president said he'd also have other specific ideas in the days ahead.

He mentioned extending tax cuts for households making under $250,000 a year signed into law by former President George W. Bush but due to expire this year, upping the nation's investment in clean energy, rebuilding more roads and highways, and tax cuts designed to keep jobs in the United States.

"My economic team is hard at work identifying additional measures that could make a difference in both promoting growth and hiring in the short term and increasing our economy's competitiveness in the long term," he said.

White House spokesman Robert Gibbs later said that in addition to initiatives already unveiled that are bogged down in Congress, the administration would roll out a variety of targeted measures designed to spur the economy and create an environment conducive to hiring.

None of the measures will be as major as last year's stimulus bill, Gibbs said. "There's only so much that can be done," he added.

"Those in America are frustrated. Those in the West Wing are frustrated" about the slow pace of recovery and an unemployment rate hovering near 10 percent, Gibbs said.

In a week likely to be dominated by foreign policy, Obama is trying to show he's still minding the economy after his 10-day vacation in Martha's Vineyard, Mass.

A string of weak economic reports in recent weeks has fed fears that the economy would fall back into recession, only slightly offset by Monday's government report that consumer spending had increased in July after several down months.

"Every single day, I'm pushing this economy forward, repairing the damage that's been done to the middle class over the past decade and promoting the growth we need to get out people back to work," Obama said in his statement.

Obama said action on the package of small-business tax cuts and credit incentives is "one thing we know that we should do" as soon as possible. Republicans have been blocking the bill, calling it misguided.

However, Obama said it was being "held up by a partisan minority that won't even let it get to a vote."

"The bill is fully paid for. And there's no reason to block it besides pure partisan politics," he said.

fast facts

Shoppers spend a bit more

Americans are spending a little more this summer, but hardly enough to rejuvenate the weakening economy. Consumer spending rose 0.4 percent in July, with much of the strength coming from increased demand for autos, the Commerce Department reported Monday. It was the best showing since March, but it followed three lackluster months when spending was essentially flat. Also, Americans' wages edged up 0.2 percent in July after seeing their incomes unchanged in June.

Obama calls on GOP to support small-business aid 08/30/10 [Last modified: Monday, August 30, 2010 7:55pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

Copyright: For copyright information, please check with the distributor of this item, Associated Press.
    

Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

Loading...
  1. Former Sen. Greg Evers, advocate for law enforcement, dead at 62.

    State Roundup

    TALLAHASSEE — Former State Sen. Greg Evers, the Baker Florida strawberry farmer and veteran politician, was killed in a single car crash hear his home in Okaloosa County. The Florida Highway Patrol confirmed the death late Tuesday, but deferred any further information pending an investigation. He was 62.

    Former Florida Senator Greg Evers, R- Milton, was a passionate advocate for law enforcement and corrections officers. He was found dead Tuesday afternoon in a car crash. He was 62. [SCOTT KEELER | Tampa Bay Times]
  2. Foundation Partners buys Anderson-McQueen Funeral Home

    Business

    ST. PETERSBURG — Anderson-McQueen Funeral Home, the Tampa Bay area's largest family-owned funeral company, has been sold.

    Anderson-McQueen Funeral Home, the Tampa Bay area's largest family-owned funeral company, has been sold.
[CHRIS URSO   |   Times]
  3. Water Street Tampa unveils video showing downtown's transformation

    Business

    TAMPA — Water Street Tampa, the sweeping, 50-plus acre redevelopment project in Tampa's urban core, has unveiled new images and video of what the downtown district will look like upon completion.

    Strategic Property Partners released a conceptual image of what the Tampa skyline will look like once its redevelopment of 50-plus acres of downtown will look like. [Photo courtesy of  of SPP]
  4. Florida ranks high for workplace equality between men and women

    Working Life

    When it comes to the workplace, Florida ranks fifth in terms of gender equality, a WalletHub study released Tuesday found.

    Florida ranks high in terms of equality between men and women in the workplace. Pictured is Sandra Murman, county commissioner in 2015, talking about the differences in pay between men and women. | [Times file photo]
  5. Treasury secretary's wife boasts of travel on government plane, touts high fashion

    National

    U.S. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin's wife, Louise Linton, boasted of flying on a government plane with her husband to Kentucky on Monday and then named the numerous fashion brands she wore on the trip in an unusual social media post that only became more bizarre minutes later.

    Steven Mnuchin and his then- financee Louise Linton watch as President Donald Trump speaks during Mnuchin's swearing-in ceremony as  treasury secretary in the Oval Office of the White House on Feb. 13. [Mandel Ngan | AFP via Getty Images]