POTUS to Congress: Pass Jobs Measures ‘Without Delay’

By MichaelJames

Feb 6, 2010 6:00am

ABC News' Sunlen Miller and Rachel Martin report:

As Congress takes up debate on the jobs bill next week, President Obama used his weekly address to call on both parties not to oppose “good ideas just because it’s good politics to do so.”

“If anyone has additional ideas to support small businesses and create jobs, I’m happy to consider them," he said. "My door is always open.  But I urge members of both parties:  Do not oppose good ideas just because it’s good politics to do so.”

The president spent much of his week outlining proposals for what he’d like included in the jobs bill: taking $30 billion from the TARP fund to create a new small business lending fund to provide capital for community banks; continuing to waive fees, increase guarantees, and expand the size of SBA-backed loans for small businesses; and taking steps to make it easier for small business owners to refinance their mortgages.

President Obama has also proposed, as first outlined in his State of the Union address, a new tax credit for small businesses that hire new workers or raise wages, an elimination of all capital gains taxes on small business investment, and targeted support to the most innovative small businesses.

Those proposals are now in the hands of Congress, and the president appealed in his weekly address for Congress to pass them quickly within the jobs bill.

“The proposals I’ve outlined are not Democratic or Republican; liberal or conservative,” Obama said in his weekly address. “They are pro-business, they are pro-growth, and they are pro-job.  Leaders in both parties have supported similar ideas in the past.  So let’s come together and pass these measures without delay.”

Obama referenced a wind energy company in Flagstaff, Ariz., as an example of a small business that has benefitted from a loan from the Small Business Administration, suggesting it allowed them to sell more wind turbines and hire more workers. In his next paragraph, he talked about the steps his administration took last year that supported “over 47,000 loans to small businesses and delivered billions in tax relief to small business owners, which helped companies keep their doors open, make payroll, and hire workers.”

The implication was that the company in Arizona was the beneficiary of one of these recent loans and directly benefitted from the Obama administration’s policies. Problem is: The senior vice president of Southwest Windpower, Andy Kruse, told ABC News that an SBA loan of $70,000 indeed was instrumental for the company, but it happened in 1996.

-Sunlen Miller and Rachel Martin

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