Democratic Governors Urge Congress to Pass Jobs Bill

As the Senate prepares to vote on the president’s $447 billion jobs bill, a group of Democratic governors has sent a letter to Congressional leadership urging “swift consideration” of the American Jobs Act.

“As governors, we believe that of all the difficult decisions we have to make as a country, our top priority must remain job creation, always,” the 16 governors write. “We therefore urge swift consideration of the American Jobs Act, which draws upon many ideas that governors — Democratic and Republican alike — are putting into action in the states.”

The letter, which was circulated by the White House, is part of a final push to sway lawmakers before the Senate votes on the bill later tonight. Republicans are expected to vote against the bill and the president continues to challenge those who oppose it to explain their reasoning.

“Today’s the day that every American will learn where their senator stands on the jobs bill. The Senate should vote for the jobs bill today. It should not wait. Let’s get it done,” the president said in Pittsburgh, Pa.

In their letter, the governors argue that “a modern economy requires modern investments” and say the country must be willing “to educate, innovate and rebuild” to create jobs.

“Our global competitors are investing in their infrastructure and in the skills and education of their workforce. To create jobs in our communities, we must be willing to do the same,” they write.

The president continues to say that he is open to a piecemeal approach to passing his bill.

“I don’t know how Congress will respond to the overall package, but our expectation is, is if they don’t pass the whole package we’re going to break it up into constituent parts,” Obama told his jobs council today.

The letter was signed by the following governors:

Martin O’Malley, Maryland

Neil Abercrombie, Hawaii

Edmund G. Brown, Jr., California

Andrew Cuomo, New York

Mark Dayton, Minnesota

John P. deJongh, Jr., US Virgin Islands

Chris Gregoire, Washington

John Hickenlooper, Colorado

Dannel P. Malloy, Connecticut

Jack Markell, Delaware

John Lynch, New Hampshire

Deval Patrick, Massachusetts

Bev Perdue, North Carolina

Pat Quinn, Illinois

John Kitzhaber, Oregon

Peter Shumlin, Vermont

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