Obama Tries to Fire Up Dems Amid 'Snowmageddon'

President Obama braved the "snowmageddon" today to address the Democratic National Committee's winter meeting, and he told them it's not just the blizzard that has Washington paralyzed.

"We may be moving forward against the prevailing winds, sometimes it may be against a blizzard," he told the crowd. "But we're going to live up to our responsibility to lead."

It was by all measures, a presidential pep talk for a party that has been unable to push through health care reform -- Obama's signature issue. But the president insisted that he's not scaling back his agenda on health care or anything else.

"I'm not going to walk away from this challenge. I'm not going to walk away on any challenge," he said. "We're moving forward."

The big challenge for the Obama administration right now is the unemployment rate, which has inched downward in recent weeks, but is still at 9.7 percent.

He used his weekly address to focus on his plan to spur hiring, which includes allocating $30 billion for community banks to encourage lending, expanding loans for small businesses and eliminating capital gains taxes on small business investment.

"The proposals I've outlined are not Democratic or Republican; liberal or conservative. They are pro-business, they are pro-growth, and they are pro-job," he said in his weekly address. But some Republicans say it's too little, too late.

In the weekly GOP address, Texas Congressman Jeb Hensarling took the president to task.

"Americans are still asking, 'where are the jobs?'" he said. "But all they are getting from Washington is more spending, more taxes, more debt and more bailouts."

To undercut those criticisms, White House officials are circulating photos of Republicans who the White House says voted against the stimulus bill last spring and yet posed at ceremonies for stimulus projects in their home states.

But a big part of the president's message today was directed at both parties.

"Now's not the time to do what's right for your party or your poll numbers," he said. "Now's the time to do what's right for the country." And he added, "elections will take care of themselves."

Getting a jobs bill passed is priority number one right now for the administration, but one hasn't even yet been written.

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid had promised the first procedural vote on a jobs bill Monday, but now his office is dialing that back, saying only that they hope to be able to consider jobs legislation sometime next week.