PITTSBURGH (KDKA) — Pennsylvania’s senior Democratic official is breaking away from President Obama when it comes to his jobs bill.
U.S. Sen. Bob Casey says the president’s legislative strategy won’t work.
Casey was one of the first Democrats to endorse Barack Obama, but now he thinks the president’s jobs bill needs to be broken apart, he told KDKA Political Editor Jon Delano.
“I’m afraid if we tried to pass one big bill, I think there’s a lot of skepticism about big pieces of legislation with all kinds of different component parts. We should break this up.”
Casey says Washington is gridlocked with too much politics to allow passage of a single jobs bill as pushed by the president.
“Even without presidential politics, it’s complicated by the politics of Washington. You’ve got too many people here that spend their whole day trying to score political points instead of working together.”
Casey says given the politics, the only way a Republican House and Democratic Senate will enact any jobs legislation is a different strategy that allows all ideas to be considered separately.
“I believe it would be much more likely if we break it up,” says Casey. “Why not have a series of votes on job creation strategies – five votes, 10 votes, I don’t care if it’s 25 votes.”
“We should stay here as long as it takes to vote over and over on the most important issue that faces the American people and that’s jobs.”
Casey says he doesn’t support everything in the president’s bill but thinks one idea could pass — the extension of the payroll tax cut for working Americans which he says led to job growth earlier this year.
“One of the reasons is that we passed a payroll cut that put a thousand bucks in the pockets of most working families.”