Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Obama Comments On Tax Cuts And Unemployment Extension

President Obama made a statement regarding an agreement between the White House and Congress to keep the Bush tax cuts for all Americans as well as the unemployment insurance. The tax cuts, which were due to expire at the end of December, would have cost the average middle class family around $3,000. Additionally, 2 million unemployed workers were at risk of losing their lifeline during this tough economic time. What should the President have done?

According to some Democrats, Obama should have stuck to his guns and fought it out. Some argue that he gave in too early. With three weeks until the end of the Lame Duck session, critics claim that he had time to convince Republicans to change their minds. However, I disagree.

As we have seen over the past two years, Republicans are not the most flexible bunch and they were willing to let the middle class absorb the increase in taxes. I think the President did the best he could with the situation at hand. Clearly, there is no way to please everyone, so Obama did what he felt was right. I support that.

With that written, let me communicate how displeased I am with some Democrats. When Democrats controlled both houses in Congress, they couldn't get much done. Now, they want to complain and critique the President's decision because the agreement didn't fit their every whim. Wake up already!

With Republicans slated to control the House in January, the White House must learn to navigate the new political environment. This will mean more compromises, but hopefully with more accomplishments, too.

My advice to both the Republicans and Democrats is to stop playing politics and start fixing the problems. Forget re-election campaigns and get to work. This is no time to play games with our fragile economy. In the words of Kenan Thompson from Saturday Night Live, I say, "FIX IT!"    

If you cannot see the video player, click here.

Update (10:32 pm):
On Tuesday, December 7, 2010, Obama took questions from the press regarding the tax cut and unemployment insurance. In this video, we get a better understanding of why he agreed to the compromise and the guiding principles he maintains.

After you view, I'm interested in hearing your thoughts on the agreement. Did you agree or disagree with the President? Why?

If you cannot see the video player, click here.

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Damond L. Nollan, M.B.A.

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