- Graham: 'This is Our Election to Lose'
- Durbin Says Jobs Bill Likely Won't Move Until October
- Bill Clinton Praises Obama Jobs Plan
- Paul Ryan Blasts Obama's 'Class Warfare,' Sees '50-50' Chance of Double-Dip
11:50. Graham: 'This is Our Election to Lose'
Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-S.C., said on Sunday that Texas Gov. Rick Perry and the Republican field should have a leg up in the 2012 race, given President Obama’s record in office.
“This is our election to lose,” Graham said on CNN’s State of the Union. “President Obama has done everything he knows how to beat himself. The reason people have little confidence in President Obama’s policies – they’re just not working.”
Graham offered some advice for Perry, the GOP front-runner.
“Governor Perry has a good record on job creation. He needs to tell the country what he did in Texas.”
As for the White House proposal floated on Saturday to establish a minimum tax on millionaires, Graham echoed the charge made by House Budget Chairman Paul Ryan on Fox News Sunday that Obama is engaging in “class warfare” rather than trying to bolster the economy.
“When you pick one area of the economy and you say we’re going to tax those people because most people are not those people, that’s class warfare,” Graham said.
-- Deron Lee
11:05. Durbin Says Jobs Bill Likely Won't Move Until October
On Sept. 8, President Obama called on Congress to pass his jobs bill “now,” but his friend and former Illinois colleague, Senate Majority Whip Dick Durbin, said on Sunday that the American Jobs Act will likely have to wait until October.
“The bill is on the calendar. Majority Leader [Harry] Reid moved it to the calendar. It is ready and poised,” Durbin said in an appearance on CNN’s State of the Union.
But when CNN’s Candy Crowley pressed Durbin on whether floor movement would have to wait until after the upcoming recess, he acknowledged, “that’s more realistic it would be next month.”
-- Deron Lee
10:59. Bill Clinton Praises Obama Jobs Plan
Even if the unemployment rate remains hovering around 9 percent next November, former President Bill Clinton said on Sunday, President Obama could still win reelection if voters conclude he had a credible economic plan that was “thwarted” by Republicans in Congress.
Clinton praised Obama’s American Jobs Act during an appearance on NBC’s Meet the Press, arguing that Republican opposition to letting the plan add to the federal deficit is hypocritical, given the unchecked war spending of the last decade. If Republicans don’t want to raise taxes on the rich to pay for the payroll tax cut Obama proposed, Clinton said, then Congress should declare the current economic climate an “emergency” and cut the payroll tax without paying for it.
“If you look at the independent economic analysis of the program the president outlined, a broad range of economists have said that, if it’s adopted, in 2012 GDP growth would be between 1.5 percent and 2 percent higher,” Clinton said as he echoed Obama’s calls for Congress to “pass this plan.”
Clinton also said that taxing the rich to close the deficit “does the least harm” to the economy compared to other options like spending cuts, though he pointed out that, in the long term, the various bipartisan commissions on the debt “all say you’re going to have to have spending cuts and tax increases and economic growth -- you have to have all three of them.”
In an appearance on ABC's This Week, Clinton reiterated his support for Obama’s jobs plan.
“All of the estimates [are] that it will create somewhere between 1.3 and 2 million jobs, and drop unemployment by approximately 1 percent, maybe a little more,” Clinton said. “That's -- we can't do much better than that right now, unless there is an aggressive action, which seems unlikely in Washington's political climate, to clean up this housing mess, because that's freezing too much investment in place.”
Asked on Meet the Press whether Obama should follow the recent advice of Clinton’s former political strategist James Carville – to “panic” and start firing staff – Clinton paused.
After a moment, he replied, “No, because he has a good economic plan.”
-- Katy O'Donnell
10:20. Paul Ryan Blasts Obama's 'Class Warfare,' Sees '50-50' Chance of Double-Dip
House Budget Chairman Paul Ryan said on Sunday that he is keeping “an open mind” on President Obama’s soon-to-be-announced plan to offset the cost of the American Jobs Act, but he expressed blanket opposition to pieces that have been already floated.
Appearing on Fox News Sunday, Ryan rejected a White House proposal for a minimum tax on millionaires.
“Class warfare may make for good politics, but it makes for rotten economics,” he said. We don’t need a system that seeks to divide people. We don’t need a system that seeks to prey on people’s fear, envy, and anxiety.”
The Wisconsin Republican was also unreceptive to Obama’s rumored proposals to cut entitlement spending.
“It looks like it’s just more price controls and reimbursement cuts to doctors and other health care providers, which simply leads to restricted access and denying care to seniors,” he said.
Ryan said his own 2010 budget plan was better designed to protect seniors while preserving entitlement programs for future generations.
Asked about the chances for a double-dip recession, Ryan was pessimistic.
“The economists tell me it’s about 50-50,” he said, putting the blame on Obama’s regulations and taxes, as well as Europe's economic woes.
-- Deron Lee