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Will Obama's jobs speech matter?
In a big speech after Labor Day, the president will reportedly outline his plan to beat unemployment. Can he say anything to give people hope?
 
President Obama: Up against the wall when it comes to the jobs crisis.
President Obama: Up against the wall when it comes to the jobs crisis.
Joe Raedle/Getty Images

In a fresh bid to kickstart economic recovery, President Obama reportedly plans to spell out new ideas to create jobs in a major address planned for early September. The Associated Press said the plan would likely include tax cuts, spending on infrastructure, and aid to people who have been unemployed for months. Can Obama offer struggling families new hope, or will he merely be repeating proposals we've heard before?

This can shake America, and Obama, out of a funk: Pointedly presenting an ambitious jobs agenda right now is a "very good idea," says Steve Benen at Washington Monthly. Not only is it what the country needs, "it also helps shift the larger conversation away from the obsession over the debt." This is a chance for Obama to show that his "priorities are sound, give the left something to fight for," and force Republicans to stop whining — or come up with their own viable proposals.
"Obama to present jobs agenda in September"

Obama is just reviving his old, failed ideas: If Obama had a clue how to create jobs, he would have done something that worked three years ago, says Andrew Stiles at National Review. If he wants to give people hope, he'll drop his "Keynesian fantasy" and try something truly new. But it seems pretty clear he plans to simply propose another so-called stimulus. "But it’s not really another stimulus, you see, because the president will ask the supercommittee to propose a super huge deficit-reduction plan to make up for it."
"Obama may ask for more stimulus"

Anything short of a bold new plan will fall flat: "With unemployment chronically hovering around nine percent," promising to hire people to fix roads and bridges won't cut it, says Jamie Stiehm at U.S. News & World Report. If Obama wants to instill optimism, and do some good, he'll have to spell out a serious plan to "get businesses sitting on cash back in the business of hiring workers." Two years ago, Obama's "beautiful words" were enough to inspire hope — now, if he doesn't have a ground-breaking jobs strategy, he should save his breath.
"Obama needs a serious jobs agenda"

 

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