Message to Congress: Pass the Obama jobs bill now

October 11, 2011

More than three weeks have passed since President Obama sent the American Jobs Act to Congress, yet House Republicans have done nothing to move the legislation forward.

The purpose of the American Jobs Act is simple: Help Americans find work and put more money in the pockets of middle-class families.

There's nothing controversial about this legislation. It's based on the simple idea that responsibility is rewarded, hard work pays, and everyone — from Wall Street to Main Street — plays by the same rules. The bill contains policies that have received bipartisan support in the past, and there's no excuse for Congress to take any more time debating whether to pass it into law.

The Jobs Act will also make key improvements in some of our country's most critical areas, from investing $35 billion to modernize our country's schools and prevent teacher layoffs to rebuilding our transportation system.

Most importantly, the American Jobs Act is fully paid for under President Obama's deficit-reduction plan. As part of his plan to reduce long-term debt, the president will also ask the bipartisan Committee on Deficit Reduction to come up with additional measures to meet our country's deficit target.

Three weeks is already too long to wait for a bill that would create jobs and get the economy moving right now. It's past time for Congress to pass the American Jobs Act.

Vivian Geyer, Columbia

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