In his weekly address, President Obama scolded Republicans for “stirring up fights” on Capitol Hill over issues that will not create jobs immediately instead of focusing on passing portions of the American Jobs Act.
However, the president said he will give Republicans “another chance” and that next week he will urge Congress to vote on “putting hundreds of thousands of teachers back in the classroom, cops back on the streets and firefighters back on the job.”
“If they vote ‘no’ on that, they’ll have to tell you why,” Obama said. “They’ll have to tell you why teachers in your community don’t deserve a paycheck again. They’ll have to tell your kids why they don’t deserve to have their teacher back. They’ll have to tell you why they’re against commonsense proposals that would help families and strengthen our communities right now.”
Over the coming weeks, the president said, he will also urge lawmakers to vote on other parts of other parts of his jobs bill, which failed in the Senate this week, including investments in infrastructure and tax cuts for small businesses that hire veterans.
“That’s what’s at stake,” Obama said. “Putting people back to work. Restoring economic security for the middle class. Rebuilding an economy where hard work is valued and responsibility is rewarded – an economy that’s built to last. And I’m going to travel all over the country over the next few weeks so that we can remind Congress that’s their job. Because there’s still time to create jobs and grow our economy right now.”
Obama is preparing to take his message on the road on a three-day bus tour next week.
Speaking from the General Motors facility in Michigan that he toured on Thursday with South Korean President Lee, Obama commended Congress for coming together to pass three free trade deals earlier this week but said “that’s also why it was so disappointing to see Senate Republicans obstruct the American Jobs Act, even though a majority of senators voted ‘yes’ to advance this jobs bill.”