Hamstrung by the nation's $1.4 trillion deficit and his pledge not to raise taxes on middle-class Americans, Mr. Obama is keen to avoid any measures suggestive of a second, big-ticket stimulus.
"There is no discussion of a package like a second stimulus, but we are working closely with Congress and consulting with outside experts to determine the right policies and the right steps," said White House deputy press secretary Jennifer Psaki.
House Democrats have said they plan to introduce a jobs bill next month. Senate Majority Whip Richard Durbin (D., Ill.) on Sunday told NBC's "Meet the Press" that Senate Democrats were keen to pass the health-overhaul bill as quickly as possible, so they could turn to jobs legislation.
Republicans say they would likely reject any sweeping jobs bill. Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R., Ky.), speaking on CNN's "State of the Union" Sunday, urged Congress to "repeal the balance of the stimulus package" and plow it into deficit reduction, saying it hasn't put enough Americans back to work.
"The welfare state is not really about the welfare of the masses. It is about the egos of the elites." - Thomas Sowell
Related post: ObamaCare faces repeal in 2011
“The business community has never attempted to involve the general public,” says Matt Crosson, who heads the Long Island Association and is one of the group’s organizers. Voters, he theorizes, “have a general disdain for Albany, but they don’t realize how bad it is.”(from nymag.com)
The movement began taking shape after lawmakers in Albany passed a $133 billion budget in April, increasing taxes and fees by $7 billion and raising spending by 9 percent. Deficit projections have risen to nearly $30 billion over the next three years. While Governor Paterson has warned lawmakers that the state may not be able to pay its bills by the end of the year, the Legislature has spurned his attempts to slash education and health care.
It’s being advised by Jay Kriegel, a longtime Democrat and member of the city’s Establishment who started his career as a hotshot 25-year-old aide to Mayor Lindsay. Most recently, he was executive director of Bloomberg’s failed 2012 Olympics bid. (Today, he works as an adviser to developer Stephen Ross.) The new group wants to wage an assault against the WFP, which has become an increasingly decisive force in city and state races, and the power of labor unions. WFP, the major health-care union SEIU 1199, teachers unions, and hospitals spent about $15 million on campaigns and lobbying in 2008. New York State United Teachers and 1199 have a combined membership of nearly 1 million.
The United States government is sick. A one-two punch of corruption is keeping our government from serving the people the way it should to. The ailments I refer to are gerrymandering and career politicians.
From Anita MonCrief:
“But to some, ACORN’s early 13-page plan for the 2008 election reinforces what critics always assumed: The group’s goal was never nonpartisan. The political plan and other ACORN documents show that the group was interested not just in helping presidential candidate Barack Obama, whom it urged its members to support, according to post-election Federal Election Commission reports. ACORN also was interested in Congress and the Ohio Statehouse.
“There’s no question that ACORN strategized to figure out how its election efforts could maximize the benefit for selected Democratic candidates in the most competitive races,” U.S. Rep. Darrell Issa of California told The Plain Dealer.”
An illuminating fact not mentioned in either article is that ACORN prepared political plans for several key battleground states in 2006 and again during the 2007-08 election cycle. As evidenced by the draft plans developed in the Spring of 2006 by the Strategic Writing and Research Department (SWORD) of ACORN Political Operations, these plans were aimed at electing “progressives” and in some cases broke down the Congressional districts by race for maximum targeting. SWORD, which was staffed by Project Vote employees, including myself, worked with ACORN head organizers in FL, MD, MI, MN, OH, PA, and RI to create local documents for the ACORN field staff to implement and present to funders and/or various partner organizations.
Because the Obama Administration has stonewalled a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request submitted last April, the National Right to Work Legal Defense Foundation filed a lawsuit today to compel the Department of Labor (DOL) to release information related to high-ranking officials’ contact with union operatives.(from nrtw.org)
“The Administration’s apparent involvement with union officials fatally undermines the integrity of the Department of Labor’s rule-making and administrative oversight,” said Mark Mix, president of the National Right to Work Foundation. “The public deserves to know the extent of the close ties between this Administration and organized labor bosses.”
National Right to Work originally lodged a FOIA request last spring, seeking disclosure on high-ranking DOL officials’ connections to powerful union lobbying interests. The FOIA submission cited concerns about Secretary of Labor Hilda Solis, who previously held a key leadership position at the Big Labor-front group “American Rights at Work,” and Deborah Greenfield, a DOL appointee who previously worked with the AFL-CIO to overturn the same union disclosure guidelines she now oversees.
As of today, the DOL has refused to honor President Obama’s widely touted promise of transparency and has failed to follow federal laws requiring the timely disclosure of public information. As a result, Right to Work attorneys concluded that a federal lawsuit was the only way to compel the level of transparency promised by President Obama and guaranteed under the Freedom of Information Act.
“It’s absolutely vital that this information is made available to the public to dispel real concerns about conflicts of interest at the Department of Labor,” continued Mix. “On the campaign trail, Obama said that ‘the way to hold government accountable is to make it transparent so that the American people can know exactly what decisions are being made [and] how they’re being made.’ We intend to hold him to that promise.”
There's griping directed at the labor-backed Working Families Party from a surprising quarter -- other labor leaders, according to sources. One source said some labor leaders weren't happy to see WFP executive director Dan Cantor at a Nov. 12 City Hall rally to protest Verizon layoffs. "They kept saying, 'He's not a labor leader. What's he doing here? He's a political leader,' " the source said.
A Cantor ally insisted the incident never happened. "It's completely made up," said the ally. Bob Master, a WFP co-chairman and political director of the Communications Workers of America, the rally organizer, said Cantor was invited with labor leaders and elected officials.
There's no doubt that the WFP has increased its visibility under Cantor. Many observers assume the WFP was the driving force behind a sick-leave bill that's gaining momentum in the City Council.