Seeking to jolt the economy, President Barack Obama will propose new ideas to create jobs and help the struggling poor and middle class in a major speech after Labor Day. And then he will try to seize political advantage by spending the fall pressuring Congress to act on his plan.
Obama's plan is likely to contain a mix of tax cuts, jobs-boosting construction projects and steps to help the long-term unemployed, a senior administration official told The Associated Press. The official emphasized that Obama's proposals would be fresh ones, not a rehash of plans he has pitched for many weeks and still supports, like his idea of an "infrastructure bank" to finance construction jobs.
On a related front, Obama will also present a specific plan to cut the staggering national debt and to pay for the cost of his new short-term economic ideas. It will challenge the new "supercommittee" of Congress to go beyond its goal of finding $1.5 trillion in deficit reduction.
Obama's major economic speech will come right after the Sept. 5 Labor Day holiday. Republicans were underwhelmed.
Brendan Buck, a spokesman for House Speaker John Boehner, said via Twitter that Obama could scrap the speech and just hand over a detailed plan to Congress. "Seriously, just drop it in the mail. Podium not required," Buck's tweet said.