After Health Care, Obama Ready to Shift to Economy

With health care nearing completion, administration signals shift to economy.

ByABC News
March 22, 2010, 9:58 PM

WASHINGTON, March 23, 2010— -- Over the past year, the Obama administration has frequently talked about "pivoting" back to the country's economic problems.

But now, with health care reform (almost) in the bag, the talk may be for real.

Asked today if there will be yet another pivot, White House spokesman Robert Gibbs said that job creation has been an ongoing priority for the administration.

"The president's been working on the economic recovery every day that he's been in office," Gibbs said. "We know that the president in fact signed a bill just last week to provide tax credits for small businesses that hire the unemployed. And I think we'll continue to talk about that going forward."

Last November, the White House announced a "Main Street Jobs Tour," which would provide an opportunity for Obama to venture beyond the Beltway to cities and towns across America.

"In an effort to spend some time out of Washington and take the temperature on what Americans are experiencing during these challenging economic times, the president will visit communities across the country over the next several months where he will speak with workers and share ideas for continued recovery," the White House said at the time.

The first stop on the tour was Allentown, Pa., Dec. 5, 2009, where Obama said he considers "one job lost one job too many."

But since then he has made just a handful of stops on the Main Street tour. Every time the White House says it is time for a sharper focus on jobs, something flares up at home or abroad to take its attention away.

With health care reform nearly in the Obama administration's rear view mirror, the focus now becomes how to create jobs and prevent another economic meltdown.