Obama must work with Republicans
We published an editorial yesterday urging President Barack Obama to release more information about the American Jobs Act to the public. As things stood, it was a plan of action with a very vague support system in place. As if on cue, Obama’s administration did just that yesterday. Office of Management and Budget Chair Jack Lew outlined a plan whereby the administration would seek to raise $467 billion over 10 years, enough to pay for the $447 billion price tag of the jobs plan. The administration is looking to raise $400 billion by limiting itemized deductions for individuals making more than $200,000 and families making more than $250,000. The rest of the money is to come from ending subsidies for certain gas and oil companies and by ending a tax break for owners of corporate jets. Yesterday, we were excited by the prospect of a new jobs plan, but nervous about the lack of information. In light of this new outline, we find it difficult to put any faith at all in Obama’s plan.
In limiting deductions for the upper classes in order to pay for the act, Obama is essentially looking to fund some tax breaks by ending others. This will not go over well with Republicans, from whom Obama was hoping to gain support by putting lowering social security taxes on individuals and businesses. The members of the GOP have made it crystal clear that they hate the idea of any tax increases, especially on the rich. Obama can urge Congress to pass this act all he wants, but we do not foresee these new tax measures going over well with his adversaries, the Republicans.
The other major problem with the act comes from the fact that the administration is mortgaging America’s future in order to pass it. The plan comes with a steep price, and the administration expects to pay for it over a decade. What, then, does the administration plan to do to pay for the upfront costs of this massive package?
If Obama ever wants to pass the American Jobs Act, he’s going to have to play a little ball with the Grand Old Party, who have made it very clear that they are too obstinate to compromise easily, if at all, on any issue regarding taxes. We like the idea behind Obama’s jobs plan, but we think his methods of funding are going to derail the whole act. That will leave the country back at square one, and we cannot afford that right now.