The student news site of Mountlake Terrace High School in Mountlake Terrace, Washington.

The Hawkeye

The student news site of Mountlake Terrace High School in Mountlake Terrace, Washington.

The Hawkeye

The student news site of Mountlake Terrace High School in Mountlake Terrace, Washington.

The Hawkeye

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President Obama presents plan to Congress aimed at helping economy

President Barack Obama laid out a new plan to spur job growth in a struggling economy where the unemployment rate currently stands at 9.1 percent during a September 8 speech to Congress.

The bill is called the American Jobs Act and is aimed at helping bolster the economy. The $447 billion plan includes $245 billion in tax cuts including extending the payroll tax holiday. The plan also includes $140 billion in infrastructure spending for rebuilding aging bridges and public schools, as well as providing local aid for potentially saving the jobs of up to 280,000 teachers. The final $62 billion of the plan is aid to unemployed workers, including a tax credit for businesses to hire long-term unemployed workers.

“I am sending this Congress a plan that you should pass right away. It’s called the American Jobs Act. There should be nothing controversial about this piece of legislation,” President Obama said in the speech. “Everything in here is the kind of proposal that’s been supported by both Democrats and Republicans — including many who sit here tonight. And everything in this bill will be paid for. Everything.”

The President proposes paying for the plan mostly by closing corporate tax loopholes and eliminating Bush-era tax cuts for the wealthiest Americans, which has been meet with opposition by Republicans.

“Private-sector job creators of all sizes have been pummeled by decisions made in Washington,” House Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) said. “It’s a very simple equation. Tax increases destroy jobs.”

Despite Republican’s pleas that increasing taxes will hurt the job market, the tax cuts approved by President Bush in 2001 and 2003 have added $2.8 trillion to the national debt.

Since those tax cuts in 2001, when the national unemployment rate stood at around 4.5 percent, it soared to as much as 10.2 percent in October 2009.

Even with all of the political wrangling surrounding the plan, Americans have an extremely favorable view of it. According to a Sept. 15-18 Gallup poll, 65 percent of Americans believe the plan will create jobs, while 40 percent of Republicans agree. When it comes to paying for the bill, 70 percent favor closing tax loopholes used by corporations and 66 percent think taxes should go up for the wealthy.

In a nation where unemployment is near its highest level in 30 years, it is clear that something must be done before this crisis gets any worse.

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    JeffNov 15, 2011 at 7:11 am

    I am completely skeptical on whether Oboma can actually pull it off and create more jobs. The President can’t create more jobs, the economy creates more jobs.

    Lets get rid of the minimum wage, and we’ll see jobs sprout up all over the place!

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