Obama’s Jobs and Economic Recovery Plan Day after House Republicans Fail to Provide a Single Vote for Vital, Historic Package
Senator Gregg Faces a Clear Choice: Putting Millions of Americans Back to Work or Letting Our Economy Fall off the Cliff
Americans United for Change, MoveOn.org Political Action, AFSCME and SEIU Fund Ads to
Run in Maine, New Hampshire, Alaska, Iowa and the DC Region
Washington D.C. – The Campaign for Jobs and Economic Recovery announced today that ads will be run in key Senate states to help assure the passage of a robust version of President Obama’s “American Economic Recovery and Reinvestment Plan.” The ads are funded by a coalition of progressive groups including Americans United for Change, MoveOn.org Political Action, AFSCME and SEIU. The ads demonstrate clear momentum behind President Obama’s first initiative in office. The vote on the President’s plan is expected in the Senate late next week.
Against a backdrop of a worsening economic crisis that resulted in 2.6 million American jobs being lost last year, and with layoffs accelerating in the early part of 2009, President Obama has outlined a recovery plan that will create or save three to four million jobs, strengthen our middle class, and improve the economy in the near and long term by making sound investments in health care, energy efficiency, transportation and schools.
The ads, which begin immediately, are targeted at securing the votes of five key United States Senators for President Obama’s “American Recovery and Reinvestment Act”. Entitled “Factory”, the 30-second spot makes the case for urgent action to address the nation’s economic crisis and presents a stark choice for U.S. Senators Susan Collins (R-ME), Olympia Snowe (R-ME), Judd Gregg (R-NH), Lisa Murkowski (R-AK) and Charles Grassley (R-IA): “support the President's plan or the failed policies of the past.” The ad overlays President Obama’s recent speeches outlining the need for urgent action on the economy on dramatic images of a shuttered factory coming back to life and people returning to work.
While economists and other experts across the board have praised the package and its focus on sound investments in our nation’s infrastructure and other priorities to stimulate the economy immediately, some Republicans have called instead for more of the policies which were pursued over the past eight years and which failed to stave off the worst economic crisis in a generation.
“The House vote in favor of President Obama’s plan to revitalize our economy and protect American jobs was good news for our economy and for all Americans,” said AFSCME President Gerald McEntee. “As we face the greatest fiscal crisis since the Great Depression, Democrats in the House acted boldly to protect jobs and create opportunity. With 11 million workers unemployed, with home values declining at an alarming rate and the need for vital public services growing rapidly, it is time for Republicans to put partisanship behind them and stand with President Obama. In the days ahead, thousands of AFSCME members will contact their senators, urging them to act responsibly and support President Obama’s plan to put people to work and get our economy back on track.”
“It was the get rich quick greed of Wall Street that got us into this hole and it will take the long-range vision of President Obama, Congress and the American people to pull us back out,” said Anna Burger, International Secretary-Treasurer of SEIU. “The millions of working people reeling from the severe economic recession are counting on our leaders to show the political backbone to pass a recovery package that not only addresses the crisis and relieves the pain, but also lays the groundwork for a stronger and fairer future. We need change that works – now and in the long-term so we can start building a stronger American economic future by investing in infrastructure and green projects to create new jobs for the 21st Century.”
"President Obama's recovery plan would begin to provide the medicine our ailing economy desperately needs," said Justin Ruben, Organizing Director of MoveOn.org. " The Senate has a clear choice--support the President's plan to green our economy and create millions of jobs, or stick with the failed economic policies of the last 8 years."
“Few people alive today have ever experienced the crushing weight that the current economic crisis is exerting on Americans of all walks of life,” said Brad Woodhouse, President of Americans United for Change. “President Obama has proposed a plan which has been passed by the House to create or save more than three million jobs by making smart and timely investments in health care, renewable energy, transportation and education. Unfortunately, every Republican in the House and some in the Senate would rather play partisan games and promote the failed policies of the past than put the American people back to work. Hopefully Republicans in the Senate like Judd Gregg will get the message that change has arrived and its time to work together to get America back to work rather than playing politics.”
The Campaign for Jobs and Economic Recovery is a coalition of more than 30 leading progressive and labor groups utilizing all the resources and techniques of a modern campaign to pass President Barack Obama’s jobs and economic recovery plan. From hundreds of grassroots events, to grass tops contacts, to thousands of phone and emails into Members’ offices, to paid advertising – this $4-5 million campaign aims to pressure key and potentially deciding votes in Congress and to build a movement for an overwhelming victory for this package so that the American people have confidence in the plan and its ability to help turn our economy around.
To date, the following organizations have signed on the Campaign for Jobs and Economic Recovery Now: AFSCME, SEIU, AFLCIO, MoveOn.org Political Action, NEA, Americans United for Change, USAction, Campaign for America’s Future, ACORN, Health Care for America Now, TrueMajority.org, Sierra Club, People for the American Way Foundation, 21st Century Democrats, American Postal Workers Union, Campaign for America’s Future, Institute for Policy Studies – Cities for Progress, Community Action Partnership, Economic Policy Institute, Environment America, League of Conservation Voters, Medicaid Health Plans of America (MHPA), National Education Association, National Postal Mail Handlers Union, National Priorities Project, National Rural Letter Carriers’ Association, National Women’s Law Center, People for the American Way Foundation, Progressive Future, Roosevelt Institution, United Food and Commercial Workers, Women’s Voices - Women’s Vote Action Fund, Working Group on Extreme Inequality, Young Democrats of America and YWCA USA.