With his approval ratings at record lows, President Barack Obama is set to unfurl before a joint session of Congress Thursday night a new $300 billion stimulus spending package to create jobs and get the country moving again.
Operative word here is new. Republicans say theyve heard this record play before.
The Presidents speech tomorrow will not include new ideas, but mostly warmed-over ideas that the White House has already enacted into law.
It's more of the same, Rep. Cynthia Lummis (R-WY) tells FOX Business. And if we keep doing what we're doing, we're going to keep getting what we're getting... which is no response from our economy and our jobs numbers.
So why does the administration need a joint session of Congress to announce this rehash? FOX Business correspondent Rich Edson has been all over this story.
Its expected that the president will bring up again an extension of expiring jobless benefits, even though this is an old idea that dates to the fall of 2009, when the president signed into law a bill that let the unemployed receive up to 99 weeks, or nearly two years, of benefits the most in history.
The president will also bring up the idea of more funding for public works projects, such as highway and school construction, as well as direct aid to local governments to focus on halting layoffs of teachers and first responders.
Those ideas, though, were part of the presidents initial $787 billion stimulus plan in February 2009.
The White House is also considering a tax credit for businesses that hire the unemployed, but that was part of the HIRE Act, which the President signed into law in March of 2010.
The president will also discuss a one-year extension of a payroll tax cut for workerswhich the President signed into law in December 2010, after the Tax Relief, Unemployment Insurance Reauthorization, and Job Creation Act of 2010 passed Congress.
The White House is expected to continue for another year a tax break for businesses that lets them deduct the full value of new equipment, but the same idea was enacted in December 2010.
Its the shovel-ready jobs from infrastructure spending that will get a lot of attention.
Even though less than three months ago, the president joked at a Jobs Council meeting with GEs chief executive Jeffrey Immelt by his side that the 2009 stimulus spending on infrastructure did not timely create the infrastructure and construction jobs predicted by the administration because "shovel-ready was not as shovel-ready as we expected."
Despite that, just this week, the president said in a speech:
"On Thursday, were going to lay out a new way forward on jobs to grow the economy and put more Americans back to work right now&Weve got roads and bridges across this country that need rebuilding...Weve got more than 1 million unemployed construction workers ready to get dirty right now. There is work to be done and there are workers ready to do it. Labor is on board. Business is on board. We just need Congress to get on board. Lets put America back to work.
So what changed since June?
Also, the White House continues to tout government spending on clean energy, even though the government playing stock broker with tax dollars is really inefficientjust look at the stimulus money that went to bankrupt solar companies like Solyndra.
The White House overpromised on an initial stimulus package which grossly under delivered, it did not create the 3.7 million jobs initially promised, and unemployment rate sticks stubbornly above 9%.
What creates jobs? Not executives like Jeffrey Immelt sitting on councils passing the time in meetings.
One idea you may not hear a lot about tomorrow night is this--the cheapest form of stimulus is business confidence. Especially confidence in D.C.s tax and regulatory policymaking machine, sorely lacking, as a traffic jam of new rules, more than 5,000 pages in health and financial reform, leaves businesses feeling stranded on the center stripe.
Would you build a new factory and hire workers if you didnt know what your tax and regulatory bill is going to look like, especially since Democratic congressmen have said they havent read major reform bills?
The presidents bear market hug to businesses doesnt help, either.