PITTSBURGH (KDKA) — President Barack Obama returned to Pittsburgh to push his jobs bill.
He’s no stranger the city – a must-win region and state for re-election. He used the occasion to deliver a political message.
“This is a moment of truth for the U.S. Senate,” Obama said. “In front of them is a bill, a jobs bill that independent economists have said would grow this economy and put people back to work.”
He questioned why any member of Congress would vote no on this bill.
“So Pittsburgh, that starts now and I’m going to need your help,” Obama said.
“Any senator who votes no should have to look you in the eye and tell you what exactly they’re opposed to,” he added.
The President also asked why Republicans were now so opposed to job creation.
“These are proposals that have traditionally been bipartisan. Republicans used to want to build roads and bridges. That wasn’t just a Democratic idea. We’ve all believed that education was important.
“You’ve got to come – if you’re voting no against this bill – and look a Pittsburgh teacher in the eye and tell them just why they don’t deserve to get a paycheck again,” Obama said.
Republicans say it’s the same old stuff that didn’t work the last time. Late Tuesday, Senate Republicans voted to block the bill.
Meantime, outside near where Obama was speaking, protestors and supporters gathered.
About 60 environmental protestors marched from Oakland to the South Side. They oppose a proposed pipeline from Canada to Texas and want the President to live up to what they call a campaign promise he made.
“We’re pretty much telling him today he has the opportunity to say no to this,” Seth Bush, a Pitt student, said. “It’s not in the hands of a legislative body, the Congress.”
Others had a different mission. Tina Henderson, of Stanton Heights, works at American Eagle and wanted to see the President’s motorcade.
“He waved at me and it was much worth it,” she said.