In a speech at an Amazon.com warehouse in Chattanooga, Tennessee, President Obama continued his assault on the GOP’s plans to demand more cuts in exchange for raising the debt limit and continuing to fund the government. He seized on increasing evidence that the public is tired of Republicans’ intractable partisanship by introducing a new offer to congressional leaders.
“If folks in Washington want a ‘grand bargain,’ how about a grand bargain for middle-class jobs?” Obama asked.
The president’s plan would simplify the corporate tax code, adding incentives for manufacturing and creating jobs in America, then use some of the proceeds to increase spending on infrastructure, manufacturing hubs that advance technology and training, and community colleges.
Along with this “bargain,” Obama called for more exporting of American goods and help for the long-term unemployed.
“I’m challenging CEOs to do more to help these Americans get back on their feet, and this fall, I’ll bring together the CEOs and companies that are putting in place the best practices for recruiting, training, and hiring workers who’ve been seeking work for too long,” he said.
He punctuated his plans with a challenge to congressional Republicans.
“I am laying out my ideas to give the middle class a better shot in a 21st-century economy. Now it’s time for Republicans to lay out theirs. If they’ve got a better plan to bring back more manufacturing jobs, or create jobs rebuilding our infrastructure for the long run, or help workers earn the high-tech skills our businesses demand, let’s hear [it],” he said.
The president then ripped apart Republican talking points on jobs, with some pointed words for the proposed Keystone XL pipeline.