Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Go Big or Go Home

President Obama will be unveiling his latest jobs plan next week and the debate within the White House is what kind of plan he should propose.

Political Wire summarizes the debate from MSNBC: "The downside to going big: The American public (especially independents) is no longer in favor of stimulating the economy by spending more money, but they do want some REAL solution to this wheezing economy. The downside to going small: Obama has racked up plenty of tactical legislative accomplishments, but he hasn't gotten credit for them."

There's also a fuller description on Politico.
My view is that the President has to go with a big plan and defend it passionately against what are sure to be withering Republican attacks. He has to almost ignore what the polling says because if he continues down the middle of the road he'll be hit by traffic from both sides. This might be his last chance to convince the American people that he actually has a plan to help the economy beyond small fixes such as continuing the payroll tax cut, which, by the way, Republicans seem to be against, and programs that allow businesses tax breaks when they hire new workers.
A big plan will shift the debate on Obama's terms and will go a long way towards addressing the feeling that the president is somehow not a leader. The Republican presidential candidates are locked into their ideology and will only propose budget cuts, which many people might support in the abstract, but will oppose if it means going without vital government services and programs.
History is generally on the side of the bold. It's time for President Obama to use the bully pulpit and the powers of his office to come forward with a bold plan.

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