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The Takeaway

Political Roundtable: Pennsylvania

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

The Takeaway kicks off a new series today where we talk with voters from each of the key electoral states to see what the political and economic situation feels like on the ground. We begin in Pennsylvania, where President Obama will be spending the day Wednesday discussing his jobs bill, and garnering the support of his base at the same time. Joining the roundtable discussion are Walt Rowen, owner of Susquehanna Glass Company in Columbia, PA, Randy Robertson, owner and president Triple R. Guitar in Lemoyne, PA and Jackie Magaro, owner and operator of Mr. Sandman, a residential restoration service company.

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The Takeaway

Obama Continues to Push Infrastructure Bill

Wednesday, November 02, 2011

The Senate is set to vote on a new part of President Obama's $447 billion jobs bill which includes funding for programs to help build roads, bridges and other public works programs. The bill is likely to fail, but that has not stopped the president from continuing to campaign for its passage. Andrea Bernstein, director of the Transportation Nation project and senior correspondent for WNYC, looks at why President Obama continues to push for infrastructure despite it looking like a losing cause.

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The Takeaway

Obama to Offer Assistance for Student Loan Debt

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

President Obama is set to announce a new program on Wednesday that the White House says will help lower interest rates on student-loans. He will unveil the proposal during an appearance in Colorado. The plan will allow students who hold both government and private loans to consolidate both into one low-interest government loan. The announcement comes as the president continues to highlight ways his administration can boost the economy through executive actions that don't require approval from Congress. Obama has expressed frustration with lawmakers, who have held up his jobs plan on Capital Hill.

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The Takeaway

Senate Blocks Obama Jobs Bill Again

Friday, October 21, 2011

Democrats were once again unable to overcome a Republican filibuster of President Obama's jobs bill on Thursday. It was the second time in 10 days the Senate refused to take up the bill. This version was scaled down to a $35 billion plan to help states and local governments avoid laying off teachers, police officers, and firefighters. The bill would have been paid for by a 0.5 percent surtax on incomes above $1 million to start in 2013. Todd Zwillich, The Takeaway's Washington correspondent, reports on the latest developments on Capitol Hill.

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It's A Free Country ®

The White House and The Root: Open for Questions

Thursday, October 20, 2011

The president is going to say, piece by piece, stand up and explain why you say we should preserve tax breaks for the very wealthy but we shouldn’t fund our nations schools.

—  Valerie Jarrett, a senior advisor and assistant to President Obama for Public Engagement and Intergovernment Affairs, on The Brian Lehrer Show.

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The Takeaway

Senate Republicans Unveil Jobs Plan

Friday, October 14, 2011

Yesterday, Senate Republicans pitched a jobs plan called "The Real American Jobs Act," which includes lowering tax rates and broadening the tax base, and repealing "Obamacare," the Democratic health care reforms. The bill is mainly a round-up of two dozen GOP bills. 

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It's A Free Blog

Opinion: GOP More Concerned with Winning than Fixing Economy

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Remember that time Democrats stood in the way of the Republican plan for creating jobs for the American people? When a Democratic minority slowed the already sluggish pace of Washington, killed every proposal that bore a different party affiliation and offered none of their own? Neither do I.

-Justin Krebs, It's A Free Country blogger.

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Transportation Nation

TN MOVING STORIES: Senate Dems Tweak Infrastructure Proposal; Cuomo Wants Speedy Federal Approval for New Tappan Zee Bridge

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Top stores on TN:

The ARC tunnel dispute fueled rancor between NJ Governor Christie and the Obama Administration. (Link)

GM signs car share agreement. (Link)

LIRR train (photo by Adam E. Moreira via Wikimedia Commons)

One New York politician wants the Long Island Rail Road to institute a bill of rights for passengers. (WNYC)

Jobs bill update: a procedural vote will come tonight. (Washington Post)

Meanwhile, Senate Democrats are working on a Plan B: merge a corporate repatriation tax holiday to an infrastructure bank proposal. (Politico)

NY Governor Andrew Cuomo wants speedy federal approval for a new Tappan Zee bridge. (Capitol Confidential)

Maryland leaders debate applying sales tax to gas purchases to boost funds for that state's infrastructure. (AP via Washington Post)

The future of Ann Arbor's transit system could include streetcars or monorail. (AnnArbor.com)

The NYC subway map did away with Charlton Street. (New York Times)

A project aimed at untangling an Amtrak, Metra, and freight train logjam broke ground yesterday on Chicago’s South Side. (WBEZ)

Should California allow hybrids with no passengers back into the carpool lane? Research says yes. (KQED)

Outgoing NY MTA head Jay Walder toured the top of the Verrazano Bridge. (NY Post)

How to store your bike in your apartment? Turn it into a bookshelf. (Apartment Therapy)

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The Brian Lehrer Show

Washington Responds to Occupy Wall Street

Monday, October 10, 2011

The Takeaway's Washington correspondent, Todd Zwillich talks about economic news from Washington over the weekend, and how politicians from right and left are responding to the Occupy Wall Street protests.

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It's A Free Blog

Opinion: America Wanted a Job, but Got an Occupation

Friday, October 07, 2011

The Democrats ignored rising frustrations and let the Tea Party steal part of the story. When debt and deficit overtook jobs and economic security, the media had a completely different fable to run with.

-Justin Krebs, It's A Free Country blogger.

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The Takeaway

Dissecting the President's Jobs Bill

Friday, October 07, 2011

On Thursday, President Obama spoke at a press conference from the White House on his jobs proposal, calling it "an insurance policy against a possible double-dip recession." Obama hopes to fund the plan via a plan pitched by Senate Democrats this week, to tax Americans with incomes above one million dollars per year. Senate Leader Harry Reid plans to bring the jobs bill to the Senate floor next week.

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The Takeaway

Democratic Leaders Propose New Tax on Millionaires

Thursday, October 06, 2011

On Wednesday, Senate Democratic leaders proposed a five percent surtax on Americans with incomes of $1 million or more per year. Senate majority leader Harry Reid said the surtax would raise nearly half of $1 trillion over the next decade, which is the amount necessary to cover President Obama's jobs bill. A recent CBS news poll showed that 64 percent of Americans think that those who earn more than $1 million per year should pay more in taxes, which means the public may be on board for the new tax. Now, Democrats will need to gain Republican support for the measure.

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The Takeaway

Cantor Says House Will Not Vote on Obama Jobs Bill

Tuesday, October 04, 2011

House Majority Leader Eric Cantor (R-VA) declared President Obama's jobs bill dead on arrival on Monday. Cantor said the House would consider elements of the bill, but refused to consider the entire $447 billion package. Todd Zwillich, The Takeaway's Washington correspondent, talks about the latest episode of political theater on Capitol Hill.

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The Takeaway

Obama Returns to Denver to Push Jobs Act

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

President Obama journeyed to Denver, Colorado on Tuesday, three years after he visited the city to accept his party’s nomination for the White House, and spoke at the 80,000-seat football stadium to excited supporters. This time, the president was in Denver to drum up support for his $450 billion jobs plan. Obama hopes Congress will pass the bill and create jobs for the millions of Americans out of work.

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It's A Free Country ®

Obama in NYC: Diplomat by Day, Partisan Fighter by Night

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

President Barack Obama started the week in the Rose Garden where he forcefully laid out his case for raising some taxes on the wealthy to help pay for his jobs bill and cut the deficit. But the annual United Nations General Assembly has forced the president to abandon that push during daylight hours. Still once night fell on his first two evenings in New York this week, the president returned to his aggressive pushback against Congressional Republicans at two campaign fundraisers.

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It's A Free Country ®

Obama's Economic Ideas are Popular, So Why isn't He?

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

"This is not class warfare. It's math." That was President Obama's blunt assessment of why higher taxes have to be a part of his proposal to Congress to decrease the deficit by $3 trillion over ten years and pay for his $400 billion jobs bill proposal. That kind of straight talk is a surefire hit for on Twitter, but it's not proven too effective at winning the confidence of the American people. 

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The Takeaway

Boehner's Jobs Speech Looks to the Private Sector

Friday, September 16, 2011

House speaker John Boehner made his own speech about jobs yesterday, to the Economic Club of Washington. In his speech, Boehner said, "The president’s proposals are a poor substitute for the pro-growth policies that are needed to remove barriers to job creation in America ... the policies that are needed to put America back to work," and stressed the importance of the private sector in generating jobs.

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The Takeaway

Do Small Businesses Really Drive the Economy?

Thursday, September 15, 2011

President Obama has been on a tour to push his $447-billion jobs package, and he's been meeting with small business owners in places like North Carolina and Ohio, making it clear that they are at the heart of his plan for economic recovery. Meanwhile, some Congressional Democrats are already saying that the jobs bill will need some major changes in order to pass. Can small businesses really save our ailing economy?

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The Takeaway

Obama Takes Jobs Act to Ohio and North Carolina

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

President Obama continues his jobs tour today, in an attempt to gain public support for the Jobs Act. Tuesday, he visited Ohio, and today he will appear in Raleigh, North Carolina to continue spreading the message and meet with small business owners. Despite President Obama's claims not to be campaigning early for the 2012 election, the White House hopes to persuade voters he has the right strategy on the economy, and put pressure on Republicans to pass the package of spending initiatives and tax cuts.

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The Takeaway

Details of Obama's Jobs Bill

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Congress received President Obama's jobs bill yesterday, giving them an up-close look at the details of it. Some Republicans are skeptical of the plan, but Obama is urging for a speedy passage of the bill, in order to get unemployed Americans back to work as soon as possible.

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