Obama urges Congress to pass job initiatives

President Obama has urged Congress to pass various initiatives that would spur hiring by small businesses, according to The New York Times. Jobs have been at the top of Obama's agenda this year.

"Even though we are digging out from this recession, we still find ourselves in a pretty deep hole," Obama says. "We may be recovering, but we are not recovered."

The job initiatives include a plan to take $30 billion from the fund that bailed out Wall Street financial institutions and redirect it to community banks with assets under $10 billion so they can lend to small businesses. The plan has been approved by the House Committee on Financial Services, and the full House is planning to address the measure next week.

Obama also wants Congress to pass legislation that would eliminate capital gains taxes for investments in small businesses; provide tax relief to small startups; and create a new state small-business initiative to compensate for cutbacks in lending by states that have had to scale back as a result of budget shortfalls.

Voters' views of the economy are significant as midterm elections approach. Some doubt the effectiveness of the administration's $787 billion economic stimulus package, but Obama says though many people still are struggling, his policies have led to economic growth. A senior administration official says the economy has created nearly half a million private sector jobs during the first five months of this year.

Date : 6/14/2010