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The Mathematics of Obama's Jobs Plan

Obama takes on GOP opposition to his jobs clan, highlighting the sensational Republican talking point that his plan it "class warfare'.

In defense of his jobs plan and deficit reduction plan to Republicans that have called them everything from "son of stimulus" to "rotten policies" to "class warfare", Obama said today that, "It's not class warfare, it's math." In an address in the White House Rose Garden, he aimed his toughened-up rhetoric at Republican critics and those Democrats that have been asking him to come out harder on jobs creation than he did this summer in negotiations with House Majority Leader John Boehner. Obama has advocated for a measure of tax increases, $1.5 trillion in all, that will help to narrow the fiscal gap in the federal budget, along with the proposed spending cuts that are being debated by the Joint Committee on Deficit Reduction. Over the next 10 years, those tax increases will generate $3 trillion in additional revenue. In addition, Obama has threatened to veto any plan that comes to his desk from the super committee that contains cuts to entitlement spending without including tax increases for the wealthy.

Where does the additional tax revenue come from? According to the President, it will come primarily from three areas, allowing the Bush tax cuts to expire (which were enacted in 2001 and 2003 and benefited those making over $250,000 a year), limiting the deductions that the wealthy are able to take, and ending certain loopholes and subsidies available to businesses and corporations. Among those are gas companies and oil companies, that Obama singled out as targets for scaling back federal support. Republicans have been vehemently opposed to any kind of tax increase, which makes this particularly bitter pill to swallow. However, House Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan announced yesterday (as did GOP pseudo-candidate Herman Cain) that he would be in support of a repeal of the last payroll tax cut that Obama imposed, which would effectively increase taxes for those families making under $106,000 by 50%. Ryan and Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell have been among those of accusing Obama of being the class warrior in tax code and debt talks, regardless of the fact that both Ryan and McConnell have switched positions several times in the last 60 days on their "lines in the sand", depending on which direction Obama took on either taxes or federal spending.

McConnell said today that, "Veto threats, a massive tax hike, phantom savings and punting on entitlement reform is not a recipe for economic or job growth, or even meaningful deficit reduction." Perhaps he was insinuating that debt ceiling threats, massive austerity cuts, phantom trickle-down hiring statistics, and fostering a radical political movement is a recipe for growth? We had eight years of economic policy the likes of which Republicans are promoting; welfare for corporations and the wealthy, massive deregulation, and resting the weight of economic health on the shoulders of an already debt-saturated middle class. President Clinton went on Today and said that one of the biggest hindrances to economic growth is the mortgage debt; almost $13.3 trillion in this country along. Providing middle class Americans with the breathing room to remove some of that debt is necessary to get people back to work. Less debt, more consumerism, more consumerism and companies start hiring again.