Office of Public Engagement

Organizations and Businesses Respond to the American Jobs Act

On Thursday, President Obama introduced the American Jobs Act, and called on Congress to pass it quickly so we can put more people back to work and put more money in the pockets of working Americans. Now organizations and businesses are adding their voice to the call for action

Teamsters, Jim Hoffa, General President
“Congress must pass President Obama’s plan now. The jobs crisis is an American problem. It isn’t President Obama’s problem and it isn’t a Republican or Democratic problem. All Americans need to come together to create good jobs for the good of our economy and the good of our country.”

Service Employees International Union (SEIU), Mary Kay Henry, President
“Tonight, President Obama displayed the leadership America needs by laying out a strong agenda to get America back to work. The proposals he outlined are an excellent starting point in the crucial effort to create good jobs now.”

United Food and Commercial Workers International Union (UFCW), Joseph Hansen, President
 “President Obama’s plan for job creation, including a private fund to rebuild our roads and schools, a tax cut for companies that hire workers and help for the long-term unemployed, is a good start.  The nation’s job crisis demands leadership from President Obama, but he cannot revive the economy alone.  Bold leadership is also needed from Republicans in Congress and the business community in order to create jobs that can support a family and rebuild the middle class.”

Laborers’ International Union of North America (LIUNA), Terry O’Sullivan, General President
“We applaud President Obama's bold, smart, progressive plan for putting Americans back to work. At its foundation, The American Jobs Act is based on something we’ve always believed – if America wants to continue being a great nation, it needs to outbuild its rivals and ensure it has the greatest transportation system in the world.”

The Sheet Metal Workers’ International Association (SMWIA), Joseph J. Nigro, General President
“Last night, President Obama displayed the leadership America needs by outlining out a strong agenda to get America back to work. Action is needed on these proposals now to get America moving again.”

The American Road & Transportation Builders Association (ARTBA), Pete Ruane, President & CEO
"We commend President Obama for underscoring the urgent need to improve the nation's transportation network to boost long-term economic competitiveness and create new jobs.”

AFL-CIO, Richard Trumka, President
“The President took an important and necessary step tonight: he started a serious national conversation about how to solve our jobs crisis.  He showed working people that he is willing to go to the mat to create new jobs on a substantial scale.  Tonight’s speech should energize the nation to come together, work hard and get serious about jobs.”

United Steelworkers, Leo W. Gerard, International President
"President Obama has made it clear to us that job creation is his top priority – now it needs to become one for this Congress. Unemployment is stuck near double-digits and the economy stagnant. We need action now. Inaction is unacceptable.”

Transport Workers Union, AFL-CIO President James C. Little
“Tonight we acknowledge President Obama’s bold call to Congress to stop the political circus and finally work on creating jobs, and protecting the livelihood of our workers.”

United Association, William P. Hite, General President
“Challenging Congress to put aside partisan politics and do the right thing for American workers, President Obama laid out a bold plan to revive our economy and turn our country around.  Jobs, jobs, jobs – was the key theme of the President’s address and in his message he once again demonstrated his unwavering support for and commitment to American workers. He also showed great personal courage in taking his message directly to the United States Congress and to the American public.”

NEA, Dennis Van Roekel, President
"President Obama clearly understands that quality education is the key to our nation's future. He's putting America's unemployed construction workers back on the job to help modernize our aging K-12 schools and community colleges. We are pleased and encouraged that the President continues demonstrate his commitment to the success of all students by helping to make sure they have  the best possible learning environment-a key element of quality education." 

American Federation of Teachers (AFT), Randi Weingarten, President
“President Obama’s bold plan is the right antidote to help solve our persistent economic problems. The president wisely decided to invest in jobs and programs that will rebuild our nation to meet its promise and potential. Congress must pass this jobs package immediately so that students will have the teachers they need and fewer rundown schools; drivers will have better roads and bridges; and Americans will have better opportunities to get and keep good jobs, and have more money in their pockets.”

ClayCo, Inc., Robert G. Clark, CEO
“President Obama has been keeping his promises and making the tough choices. All of us need to come together and support his leadership and his ideas, because in the long haul it will be the best strategy for all of us. To my family, Friends and all of our employees across the country, I am pledging my support to you and to the President.”

The Orthodox Union, Nathan Diament, Director of Public Policy
“The Orthodox Union commends President Obama for recognizing the key role non-profit employers play in America, including in our overall employment landscape.  If enacted -- and structured in a way that tax-exempt non-profits can access -- the tax cuts and subsidies, will aid the non-profit sector which has suffered greatly during the economic downturn.”

Environment America, Anna Aurilio, Director of the Washington D.C. Office
“We are pleased that the president’s speech highlights an important fact: that a healthy economy can, and in fact must, go hand in hand with a healthy environment. The president recognized tonight that rolling back key protections for our environment and public health will do nothing to help our economy, and rather will cost us and our families dearly.”

The Labor Council for Latin American Advancement (LCLAA), Milton Rosado, National President
“We welcomed the President’s message on jobs and the need for both parties to come together to put people back to work. We are weary of partisan bickering when our members and countless families are in need of jobs and those that teach, nurse and protect our communities are facing attacks to their labor rights, security, and job quality.  Now we need our elected officials to show us that they have the courage to focus on what is critical at this point in time: job creation.  We are encouraged by the President’s strategy to revitalize our economy and expand the middle class by rebuilding our infrastructure, reviving American manufacturing, and rewarding job creators and working people, not those that turn their backs on our communities and outsource jobs.”

The Labor Council for Latin American Advancement (LCLAA), Hector E. Sanchez, Executive Director
“We commend the President for recognizing that this economic crisis is not a race to the bottom and must not serve as a pretext to do away with fundamental rights. Collective bargaining is a tool for social mobility and a key component to build a healthy middle class. We will continue working to promote the creation of quality jobs that will expand access to the middle class to all working families. This is why maintaining basic social protections are a priority and LCLAA will continue fighting to preserve Medicaid, Medicare, Social Security, and unemployment insurance”.

American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE), Andy Herrmann, President-elect:
“Tonight, President Obama made clear his commitment to investing in our nation’s infrastructure and the importance that such an effort will have to America’s economy and international competitiveness. ASCE is heartened by the President’s call to invest more than $90 billion in America’s infrastructure, and his recognition that these critical funds will improve lives while at the same time creating thousands of jobs. We believe, as the President said tonight, that a “world class infrastructure” is what made America great. Reinvesting in that infrastructure can support a return to U.S. prosperity.”

National Partnership for Women & Families, Debra L. Ness, President
“The initiatives President Obama proposed tonight are important to the country, to future generations, and to women and families right now.  America needs to get back on track as a nation where hardworking people can support themselves and their families, and we need lawmakers to put aside partisan differences and put in place the measures America needs.  President Obama laid out a solid plan tonight that can make a real difference for millions of women.”
 

CenterLink: The Community of LGBT Centers, Terry Stone
 “It’s time for Congress to stop the arguing, posturing and worrying about their jobs and to start concentrating on getting Americans back to work.  President Obama’s message was clear---We can’t wait any longer.” 

Our Time, Matthew Segal, President
"President Obama gave an excellent speech tonight for young Americans that referenced millions of teens without summer jobs and the critical need for workforce training in emerging industries such as engineering and computer science. Given that the average soldier returning from Iraq or Afghanistan is in his or her mid-twenties, I am glad the American Jobs Act will specifically provide tax credits for businesses that employ young veterans. Perhaps most importantly, the President's recognition that Americans "cannot wait 14 months until his next election" for Congressional action on jobs is inspiring to a generation who is currently experiencing the highest unemployment rate and is increasingly disenchanted with the excessive partisanship in Washington."   

Third Way
“With this speech, the President reaffirmed that he is a pro-growth Democrat. His plan includes ideas from the left,right, and center to rev up the jobs engine in the short term and grow the economy in the long term. His plan reduces the cost of business and hiring, invests in America’s infrastructure, puts more money in taxpayers’ pockets, and doesn’t add a dime to the deficit. It is the right combination of discipline and imagination that will hopefully get the economy moving faster.”

Americans for Financial Reform
“We applaud President Obama for focusing on measures to create jobs, and address the terrible problem of unemployment facing American families and communities.”

Natural Resources Defense Council, Frances Beinecke
“Tonight President Obama laid out a comprehensive plan for getting more Americans back on the job.  Unlike Republican leaders in Congress, the president did not try to use the economic crisis as an excuse to destroy bedrock environmental safeguards or to continue to subsidize big oil companies.”

National Council of La Raza, Janet Murguía, President and CEO
“We commend President Obama for laying out the need for more aggressive policy action to stimulate job creation.” 

The Center for Economic and Policy Research (CEPR), Dean Baker, Co-Director
“It is encouraging to hear that President Obama included work sharing as part of his jobs agenda. This is a job creation measure that both has been shown to be successful and has the potential to break through partisan gridlock.”

U.S. Green Building Council, Rick Fedrizzi, President, CEO and Founding Chair
“The President’s proposal tonight will go a long way toward jump starting jobs across every sector of the building community, a sector especially hard hit by the struggling economy. Energy retrofits especially are a cornerstone to broader economic recovery in every sector, and nowhere will that be more important than in our homes, our neighborhoods and our schools.  In fact, there is a long list of school infrastructure improvements ready to go and awaiting funding. Not only could this mean great things for the economy and the millions of professionals in the building industry desperate to get back to work,  it means great things for the health and well being of our children.”

American Institute of Architects, Clark Manus, President
“We find several issues on which we agree in the President’s sweeping jobs proposal, including extending the payroll tax cut for another year and his emphasis on rebuilding America’s infrastructure, which includes homes and commercial buildings in the President’s view.”
 

Robert Creamer, Democracy Partners 
“What was needed was a package of proposals that were bold, projected urgency, and will create jobs now.  The President delivered.”

The Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights, Wade Henderson, President and CEO
President Obama’s American Jobs Act contains a number of strong proposals that will help reduce unemployment in the short term, and put our nation on a more solid economic footing in the long term. They are proposals that can and should receive strong bipartisan support – even in today’s contentious political climate – and Congress should act on them without delay.”

National Employment Law Project, Christine Owens, Executive Director
“The President made a strong case tonight for the urgent need to put America back to work.  He laid out a plan that could jump start job growth and return millions to paid employment.  After months focused on the wrong priorities, it is past time for our leaders to shift their attention to job creation, front and center.  We are glad the President has tackled this crisis head-on, and we urge Congress to take him up on the call to act immediately.”

TechAmerica, Phil Bond, President and CEO
“The President’s plan offered some reason for hope for the technology industry, addressing some of the fundamental issues required for the industry to continue to flourish; namely trade, tax reform and talent. We whole-heartedly agree that to help American innovation companies we must “out-build, out-educate and out-innovate”.  

 National Jewish Democratic Council, David A. Harris, President & CEO
“Tonight, the contrast has never been clearer: behind door number one, we have President Obama, presenting a powerful American Jobs Act based on ideas that have been supported by Democrats and Republicans alike. Behind door number two, we have GOP House leaders and presidential candidates paying only lip service to jobs, while instead focusing squarely on divisive social issues and slashing programs that most Americans hold dear. Any unemployed or underemployed American should choose door number one in a heartbeat.”

 Center for American Progress (CAP)
“Tonight, President Obama put forth a plan whose boldness matches the size of the challenge. It is pragmatic and sharply focused on the biggest obstacles holding back economic growth. And it is fiscally responsible.”

American Legion, Fang A. Wong, National Commander
“The American Legion heartily welcomes the jobs plan initiatives pertaining to veterans announced by President Obama, especially since they reinforce the White House’s commitment to get more veterans employed.”

Small Business Majority
“President Obama’s speech today on the American Jobs Act underscores the fact that all roads to a brighter economic future start with small business. We applaud the president for highlighting the need to cut taxes for small businesses and offsetting those cuts by closing corporate tax loopholes, which do no harm to small firms. Additionally, his focus on putting middle class Americans back to work and boosting their spending power is imperative for our entrepreneurs, as they are small businesses’ primary customers. We have an employment problem, and small businesses create 65 percent of all new jobs. Spotlighting small business will help create a cycle of prosperity that directly benefits the economy by putting America back to work.”

U.S. PIRG Tax and Budget, Dan Smith, Associate
“President Obama was right to call for bold new investments in our outdated transportation infrastructure. Fixing our roads and building new railways won’t just put thousands of unemployed construction workers back to work now; it will allow America to meet the demands of a competitive 21st century economy.”

Sierra Club
“The Sierra Club applauds President Obama’s plan to put Americans back to work and renew our nation’s role as a global leader in innovation.  We are encouraged by his commitment to protecting Americans from toxic pollution such as mercury, leveling the playing field, ending subsidies for Big Oil and building a clean energy economy that works for all Americans.”

 Jewish Council for Public Affairs, Dr. Conrad Giles, Chair
“The jobs crisis exists throughout the entire country. No community, rural or urban, big or small, has been untouched. With such widespread need for new job opportunities and assistance, Congress should begin work on the President’s recommendations for improvements to our homes, schools, and roads without delay.These projects will both revitalize our communities and put Americans back to work. Long term recovery will require investments across varied industries and sectors. We appreciate the President’s endorsement of support to our teachers and health care providers. We urge Congress to consider as well the police and firefighters we depend on. Additionally, nonprofits, which provide vital services during recessions, are themselves suffering, and will continue to do so without Federal support.”

The National Committee, Max Richtman, President/CEO
“We applaud President Obama for refocusing our national attention to where it should be--economic recovery--while offering relief that many Americans desperately need. We agree wholeheartedly with the President, the time to act is now and we hope Congress will move quickly to make job creation priority #1.”

Building and Construction Trades Department, Mark H. Ayers, President 
“President Obama has put forth a plan that will help restore confidence in our economy in both the near and long term.  We call on Congress to act and look forward to working with the Administration and Congress on all elements of this proposal.” 

Hispanic Federation, Lillian Rodríguez-López, President
“The Hispanic community has been devastated by the economic downturn that started nearly five years ago. The President’s proposal will ensure that unemployed Americans have access to supports that help them provide for themselves and their families, will provide tax relief both for small business and individuals, will enhance summer youth employment programs, strengthen our schools and make strides toward addressing the long-term persistent unemployment rate that has disproportionately impacted Hispanics. What is needed now is for our elected leadership to come together and take swift action to pass these needed reforms so that millions of Hispanics can get back on a path to economic prosperity.”

BlueGreen Alliance, David Foster, Executive Director
“President Obama tonight turned the nation’s attention to creating good, American jobs. His agenda will set the stage for revitalizing our economy and doing the work that America needs done. Now the Congress needs to respond by quickly breaking the logjam on the jobs crisis.”

National Association of Public Hospitals and Health Systems, Dr. Bruce Siegel, CEO
“The National Association of Public Hospitals and Health Systems (NAPH) commends President Barack Obama for recognizing the need to stimulate job creation and offering Congress a plan to do so.”

National Center for Transgender Equality, Mara Keisling, Executive Director
“Americans need and want decisive action to create jobs for regular people. President Obama’s proposal is decisive and right on point. Congress needs to step up, do their part and pass the American Jobs Act immediately. “

National Gay & Lesbian Chamber of Commerce, Justin Nelson and Chance Mitchell, Co-Founders
“Last night, President Obama demonstrated strong leadership and clear vision addressing the Joint Session of Congress. While far too many in Washington, DC focus on the political horse race, the president shined the spotlight where it belongs; on the millions of Americans, many of them LGBT, who are working too hard to give their families a better life to read the latest poll numbers.”

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