For the third straight month, the job picture in the United States has been disappointing. Any chance lawmakers might pick up the major provisions of the American Jobs Act, most of which have traditionally enjoyed bipartisan support, and which independent economists believe would have a significant impact?
Well, no. Republican lawmakers are absolutely convinced the jobs report is Obama's fault, even though they killed his jobs plan, and despite the fact that they were taking credit for themselves when the jobs picture looked strong earlier this year. (How does the GOP get credit for February 2012 jobs, but avoid blame for June 2012 jobs? The answer is simple: shut up.)
But don't worry, Americans can take some comfort in knowing Congress won't take the economic news lying down. Dave Weigel has the story.
For any lover of American prose, the political statements that follow lousy jobs reports are clip-and-save treasures. Michele Bachmann assures us that the economy is struggling because of "uncertainty." Mitt Romney wants the "kick in the gut" to end. Amid all the verbs and gerunds expressing disappointment, Eric Cantor gives us a sort of heads-up about how Congress will respond.... The House will hold yet another vote on full repeal of the Affordable Care Act.
It will pass, and die in the Senate. Tread carefully. After that vote, you don't want to be mobbed on the street by newly certainty-infused people offering you jobs.
House Republicans won't pass -- or even consider -- a meaningful jobs bill, but they can vote to kill health care reform for the third or fourth time (it's tough to keep track). The economy will no doubt sour as the House majority votes to take health care coverage away from millions, pushing a bill they know can't pass. Eliminating health care benefits, as a practical matter, is the GOP jobs plan.
To be sure, it'll make Cantor feel good about himself to go through this charade. I wonder if the unemployed will feel equally good knowing the House GOP leadership is more concerned with hollow, regressive theatrics than job creation.