Saturday, June 2, 2012

Economy Strains While "Constipation Congress" Ignores Business


The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 274.88 points on Friday after the government released a lackluster unemployment report. Employment didn't fall, but it didn't go up much either.

This isn't good news for President Obama, and Mitt Romney and his surrogates will blame the weak economy on the Obama administration.

But what about members of Congress who get nothing done because they are stymied by constant filibusters, rants, nonsensical abortion laws, and other trivia from the Republicans?

In a speech in Manchester, New Hampshire, Democratic Governor Martin O'Malley of Maryland coined a colorful new term today: "Constipation Congress." And he had a few other piquant things to say as well. Washington Post reports:
We have a constipation Congress. These Republican obstructionists wouldn’t pass gas if they thought it might help our president heal our economy...

Job creation is up. Unemployment is down. And while we still have a lot more work to do, because of President Obama’s leadership General Motors is alive and hiring and Osama bin Laden is not!

Could our nation’s jobs recovery be happening faster? Sure it could. but that would require compromise, practicality, and a focus on the common good — three concepts which the newly radicalized tea party Republican Congress is now totally incapable of grasping."
O'Malley's speech goes along with President Obama's Weekly Address entitled "It's Time for Congress to Get to Work," Obama also put the blame on the stonewalling of Congress on nearly every issue, but especially jobs programs.
Right now, this country is still fighting our way back from the worst economic crisis since the Great Depression. The economy is growing again, but it’s not growing fast enough. Our businesses have created almost 4.3 million new jobs over the last twenty-seven months, but as we learned in this week’s jobs report, we’re not creating them fast enough. And just like last year at this time, our economy faces some serious headwinds. Gas prices are starting to come down again, but when they spiked over the last few months, it hit people’s wallets pretty hard. The crisis in Europe’s economy has cast a shadow on our own. And all of this makes it even more challenging to fully recover and lay the foundation for an economy that’s built to last.

But from the moment we first took action to prevent another depression, we knew the road to recovery wouldn’t be easy. We knew it would take time, that there would be ups and downs along the way. But we also knew that if we were willing to act wisely, and boldly, and together; if we were willing to keep at it, and never quit, we would come back stronger.

. . . I sent Congress a jobs bill last September full of the kinds of bipartisan ideas that would have put our fellow Americans back to work and helped reinforce our economy against those outside shocks. I sent them a plan that would have reduced the deficit by $4 trillion in a way that’s balanced – that pays for the job-creating investments we need by cutting unnecessary spending and asking the wealthiest Americans to pay a little more in taxes.

Since then, Congress has only passed a few parts of that jobs bill, like a tax cut that’s allowing working Americans to keep more of your paycheck every week. That was important. But Congress hasn’t acted on enough of the other ideas in that bill that would make a difference and help create jobs right now. And there’s no excuse for that. Not when so many people are looking for work. Not when so many people are struggling to pay the bills.

So my message to Congress is, get to work.

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