TPM: With President Obama’s jobs package facing a handful of Democratic defections in the Senate, the White House released a letter from 16 Democratic governors who are standing squarely behind the bill in a last-ditch lobbying blitz before the Tuesday night vote.
… the Democratic governors who signed onto the letter to House and Senate leaders are urging Congress to swiftly pass the American Jobs Act…
…. The signers include: Maryland Gov. Martin O’Malley, Hawaii Gov. Neil Abercrombie, California Gov. Edmund G. Brown, Jr., New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo, Minnesota Gov. Mark Dayton, U.S. Virgin Islands Gov. John P. deJongh, Jr., Washington Gov. Chris Gregoire, Washington, Colorado Gov. John Hickenlooper, Connecticut Gov. Dannel P. Malloy, Delaware Gov. Jack Markell, New Hampshire Gov. John Lynch, Massachusetts Gov. Deval Patrick, North Carolina Gov. Bev Perdue, Illinois Gov. Pat Quinn, Oregon Gov. John Kitzhaber, Vermont Gov. Peter Shumlin.
Steve Benen: The Senate will take up the American Jobs Act tonight, and no one needs a crystal ball to know the bill won’t come close to getting 60 votes. But let’s take a moment to mention exactly what will be voted on tonight.
This is not a vote on final passage of the bill. It’s not even a cloture vote to end debate so that there can be a vote on final passage. Tonight, rather, is on the motion to proceed…..
In effect, what the Senate will vote on tonight is whether they can have a debate on the jobs bill. That’s all this is, a vote to allow a discussion. Republicans will, of course, filibuster the motion to proceed….
When members of the Democratic caucus – Ben Nelson, Joe Manchin, and Joe Lieberman – vote with Republicans tonight, they’re not only rejecting a credible jobs bill, they’re also rejecting an opportunity to talk about a credible jobs bill. Republicans and conservative Dems are, as a practical matter, saying that the notion of even debating the American Jobs Act is so offensive, they can’t even allow members to begin the discussion…..
Kevin Drum (Mother Jones): Greg Sargent rounds up reaction to the possibility that “moderate” Senate Democrats will sink Obama’s jobs bill:
Obama has done what skittish Senate Dems and their aides asked him to do – he has waged a public campaign to build support for his proposals. Have we already forgotten that only a few short months ago, the papers were filled with quotes from anonymous Dems complaining that Obama had failed to (a) focus on jobs; and (b) use the bully pulpit to rally public support for job-creation proposals?
By any measure, Obama has addressed those complaints. As ABC News polling director Gary Langer put it the other day, Obama proved that “it’s possible to move the bar” when it comes to public opinion on jobs. And yet, now that Dems have finally made that pivot to jobs and are finally fighting it out on turf favorable to themselves; now that Obama has shown it’s possible to move public opinion in the direction of his proposals, despite his low approval numbers; and now that Obama and Dem leaders are hoping to use GOP opposition to the jobs bill to cast the GOP as the number one enemy of progress on the economy, a handful of moderate Dems are still prepared to help Republicans muddy those waters.
It is truly astonishing. Finally, Democrats have a chance to demonstrate a sharp, clear, popular difference with Republicans, and even then they can’t manage to stand together and look like an actual governing party….
…. Even on a purely symbolic bill (since the House isn’t going to pass it anyway), Democrats can’t manage to get their act together. What a bunch of morons.
President Obama’s statement on the Senate’s vote Tuesday on his proposed American Jobs Act:
“Tonight, a majority of United States Senators voted to advance the American Jobs Act. But even though this bill contains the kind of proposals Republicans have supported in the past, their party obstructed the Senate from moving forward on this jobs bill.
“Tonight’s vote is by no means the end of this fight. Independent economists have said that the American Jobs Act would grow the economy and lead to nearly two million jobs, which is why the majority of the American people support these bipartisan, common-sense proposals. And we will now work with Senator Reid to make sure that the individual proposals in this jobs bill get a vote as soon as possible.
“In the coming days, Members of Congress will have to take a stand on whether they believe we should put teachers, construction workers, police officers and firefighters back on the job. They’ll get a vote on whether they believe we should cut taxes for small business owners and middle-class Americans, or whether we should protect tax breaks for millionaires and billionaires.
“With each vote, Members of Congress can either explain to their constituents why they’re against common-sense, bipartisan proposals to create jobs, or they can listen to the overwhelming majority of American people who are crying out for action. Because with so many Americans out of work and so many families struggling, we can’t take “no” for an answer. Ultimately, the American people won’t take “no” for an answer. It’s time for Congress to meet their responsibility, put their party politics aside and take action on jobs right now.”