During a speech arguing for his program to rebuild America’s roads and bridges, President Obama criticized the House GOP for passing meaningless resolutions about In God We Trust instead of creating jobs.
Here is the video from C-SPAN:
Obama was speaking about the importance of infrastructure when he said, “If you don’t want to take my word for it, take it from one of my predecessors. It’s one of the previous presidents; he said that, and I am quoting here, the bridges and highways we fail to repair today will have to be rebuilt tomorrow at many times the cost. He went on to say that rebuilding our infrastructure is common sense, that’s a quote, and quote an investment in tomorrow that we must make today. That president was Ronald Reagan, who just put a statue up of at the airport. Since when do we have Republicans voting against Ronald Reagan’s ideas?”
Later the President blasted Congressional Republicans, “Everybody here, we are Americans. We’re not people who sit back and watch things happening, and if Congress tells you they don’t have time, they’ve got time to do it. We’ve been, in the House of Representatives, what have you guys been debating? John, you’ve been debating a commemorative coin for baseball? You had legislation reaffirming that In God We Trust is our motto. That’s not putting people back to work. I trust in God, but God wants to see us help ourselves by putting people back to work.”
Obama made a great point. How can the House GOP claim that they have no time to create jobs when they obviously have time to debate and pass legislation relating to baseball and the national motto? Under closer scrutiny, the Republican argument that they don’t have the time to create jobs completely falls apart. Maybe House Republicans would have more time if they didn’t take off one week for every two weeks they work?
Amazingly, House Republicans are scheduled to work even less in 2012. The House GOP has given themselves a schedule for next year that will have them in session for just 108 days. They will only be in session for six days in January, eight days in April, and three days in August. The House will be in session for exactly 13 days between September 10 and the 2012 election. With an average salary of $174,000, each member of the House will earn $1,611.11 for each day that they are in session.
If America really wanted to reduce the budget deficit, they could start by paying the members of Congress only for the days that they are actually in session.
While the House wastes time passing resolutions that do nothing more than pander to their base millions of Americans are still jobless and struggling, which is exactly the way Republicans want things to be. The American people do support his plan to create jobs. Harry Truman won the 1948 presidential election by campaigning against a do nothing Congress. President Obama is looking to do accomplish the same feat in 2012.
Congress’ record low approval ratings are evidence that the American people understand what the Republicans are up to. As long as Obama keeps talking about jobs, and why the Republicans are opposed to creating jobs, he will be in a good position on Election Day in 2012.
If forced to choose between In God We Trust or a job most Americans would rather have the job, and if the do nothings in Congress don’t get this they too will feel the pain of unemployment.