Obama Scrambles for Jobs Plan

But problem may be too big to fix
By Kevin Spak,  Newser Staff
Posted Aug 30, 2011 7:41 AM CDT
Updated Aug 30, 2011 7:59 AM CDT

(Newser) – As he announced the appointment of Alan Krueger yesterday, President Obama promised a speech outlining his new jobs agenda next week—but behind the scenes, Obama and company haven’t actually agreed on that agenda yet, the Washington Post reports. The president is considering a number of options, including a tax credit for companies hiring new workers, an infrastructure bank, clean-energy tax cuts, and revamping the unemployment system so that it pays companies to hire out-of-work people.

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Obama will also try to extend existing programs like the payroll tax cut. But no matter what he advocates, he'll be hard pressed to put a huge dent in unemployment, Bloomberg frets, both because private-sector demand is so low and because he'll face opposition from Republicans. “The broad honest answer is that there’s a limited amount that he can do that I know of,” said a Clinton-era chairman of the Council of Economic Advisers. “We’ve kind of done a lot of the things we know how to do.” (Read more Barack Obama stories.)

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