tv News Nation MSNBC November 30, 2011 11:00am-12:00pm PST
we were selling more. >> newt gingrich attempts to explain how he made millions of pitching the ideas who paid him to meet lawmakers on capitol hill. whatever you call it, will conservatives in places like south carolina and other key states buy it to avoid supporting mitt romney? >> he spent his last 30 or 40 years in washington. i spent my career in the private sector. >> speaking of governor romney, is it finally sinking in? he takes a slight swing. and will he follow up with a heard punch given new revelations on how newt has been making a whole lot of money. and nearly 300 arrested as the last two occupy sites are raided just before dawn and protesters moved out by a massive number of police. put me out at 104. >> plus a 104-year-old woman and her 83-year-old daughter were minutes away from being evicted after a bank foreclosed on their home. wait until you find out who
stepped in to stop it. >> hey there. the "news nation" is following developing news this hour. we've got a live look from scranton, pennsylvania where president obama will speak there later within our hour. the president's focus is to get the republicans on board and vote to extend the pay roll tax cut democrats say would save working families around $1,500. and while that is the major fight brewing in congress, we know the fight to stay in the white house is not far from the mind of this president. president obama won pennsylvania in 2008 but his popularity in that state has taken a major hit. according to a recent quinnipiac poll, 52% of the state say they disapprove. 50% say that he doesn't deserve re-election.
thank you all for joining me. michael, i'll start off with you here. let's look at the number for scranton, pennsylvania. the median income, $34,000. that's according to the census bureau which would mean an additional $696 that these people would owe to the government if the pay roll tax is not extended in the state there. let's talk about the voters. the white middle class voters. the president needs to take that state. >> yeah. this is where my folks are from. both my parents are cole crackers from northeastern pennsylvania so i feel like i know the political sensibilities well. these are democrats. white blue collar folks. they're for a slightly more conservative candidate than you would typically find lining up nationally in the democratic party. bob casey by way of example is the prototype of what they're looking for. they were very strong for hillary in 2008. she got like 5% of the vote. her roots run deep in that part of the state as well. barack obama is perceived bile to be too liberal.
so it is very much an area of the state that is in flux and that's why he's going there to sell the pay roll tax. >> if he is perceived to be too liberal, the same folks who thought he would be able to dig the country out of the hole that it was put in by the previous administration. let's look at the scoreboard. president obama beat john mccain by 11 points in 2008 but since then, the gop swept the 2010 mid terms, they won the governor's seat, a senate seat and five congressional districts including the 11th district where the president is going to appear there today. what do you believe the plan is? is it really to hit home that i am trying to save you money right now on congress. they're holding up legislation republicans are holding up legislation that could in the end help you, the folks who need it the most. >> right. president obama knows that pennsylvania will be a key state for him. he knows that he needs to up his vote with college educated whites because he is going to lose noncollege educated whites. republicans did very well in the
2010 mid terms with college educated whites. if that number grows for republicans, that means that's a dem graphic challenge to the president when he is trying to put together a coalition to win next year. it means he is under pressure to win well more than 80% of the nonwhite vote. this is something he is trying to do, to win over swing voters in that one bracket of college educated whites. he knows he is going to lose the noncollege educated whites. it will make worse off with protecting the rich and their tax breaks and they're not fighting for the middle class. >> let me bring you in. how then, as they are referred to as noncollege educated whites relay to mitt romney who by critics say call them the 1%. that he's changed on social issues and a number of other issues important to the people in that state. and you've got newt gingrich who two of his interests, two of his companies, if you will, made $55 million over the last ten years. he made 60 grand on one speech.
joe scarborough pointed out earlier that for example in south carolina, that is more than what a teacher would make, a firefighter would make, that is more than a median income, one speech he got. how does he relate to the noncollege educated white person who may not want to support this president? >> well, he does it by talking about jobs and the economy and a plan to grow, to grow our economy. so both gingrich and romney and i should note i'm unaffiliated in this race. they've been about it around the country. a lot of the reason for gingrich's rise in the polls, he has spoken truth to power. what he perceives as a liberal bias in the media. he's had very commanding performances in the debates and as they very accurately depicted for your viewing audience, the dynamics of the independent voter in pennsylvania are very much upside down. pennsylvania is almost two states in the sense that the eastern part of the state, the western part of the state mean two very different things. i think especially noncollege
educated whites are looking for economic opportunity and jobs. if republicans can present a convincing argument to that effect, we'll have a very good chance to win their vote because they're disfwaektd the policies of the president. >> i too lived in philadelphia for four years. i am very familiar with the make-up of the state. i don't want to press you on this. you worked with former governor romney in 2007 but you're not committed now. why? >> you know, i worked for governor tim pawlenty earlier this year and i respect enormously governor romney. i worked for him. i think very highly of him. i think he would be a fine nominee, a great president. i know a lot of the people in this race so i haven't taken a position on it. i'm focused actually a lot of the work of the republican governors. i'm down here in florida with a lot of the republican governors including the republican governor of pennsylvania who has been blazing a trail in his state by pushing the needle on fixing budget problems, trying to create jobs and reforming big things in education. i think voters will look at results.
not a lot of the hot air in washington. and we should highlight more of what's going on with the republican governors and i think we do very well in 2012. >> let me get back to the people running for president. i have to ask you. newt gingrich said that he is not a lobbyist despite this new york times article and some of what people would see as evidence to prove otherwise. but he is kind of i guess in his words, a celebrity of sorts. what do you make of that? >> yeah. i thought that was a poor word choice. although i think that the bit about how much he was paid for speeches frankly although it may cost him with blue collar folks we've been about, conservatives love that. in that they see someone who is financially successful. so that's not a problem. one thought for me on this. in pennsylvania, republicans, they are confident now that they can win this state. and tamron, the way they know that, they are no longer pushing the case to get rid of winner take all. remember that whole debate where they thought they could change the rules in time for 2012. now they're saying maybe we win the state and we would be
penalizing ourselves. >> and herman cain spoke earlier. he was supposed to talk about recessing his campaign means. he did not. so we'll wait to see what he has to say. i want to go back to romney. he gave an interview to fox news and some people are saying this was a testy interview. he is in what you might call friendly territory. but was not ready to take some of these questions regarding the accusations that he is a flip-flop. let's play it. >> do you think a mandate, mandating people to buy insurance is the right tool? >> brett, i don't know how many hundred times i've said this. this is an unusual interview. let's do it again. >> and i say on camera and other places that at times, you thought it would be a model for the nation. >> you're wrong, bret. bret, bret, the tape out there, continue to read the tape. >> it's interesting. the tone there also, mitt romney says that he is available for press conferences almost every
day. but our embed said that he does not hold press conferences. is he taking a page from sarah palin's play book of avoiding the media and having this testy, you don't know what you're talking about tone there? >> well, i think bret did a good job of pointing out the fact that governor romney has flipped on several positions, including the way that he has discussed the mandate for health care that was included in his health care massachusetts law. he has avoided press availabilities and he has actually avoided another forum on bret baier's show that the other candidates have gone on. but governor romney is trying to play it safe. his strategy is to stay alive for a very long campaign with proportional voting and to avoid harming himself. that's why he avoids a lot of media opportunities. the sunday shows included. he is trying to avoid anyway of harming himself in the process. and so far it has worked. >> if it turns into a two-man
race between governor and newt gingrich, playing it safe may not spell successful we know that. but thank you greatly for your time. we appreciate it. thank you for joining us. we haven't seen you in a while. we have some developing news to report to you in the penn state child sex abuse situation. a new accuser has filed a lawsuit against jerry sandusky. it is the first lawsuit filed against sandusky. we knew this was likely to happen but now it is here. >> we knew there would be lawsuits. this is the first one. it is from an individual who is not among the eight individuals who were initially named in that grand jury report released earlier this month. it is significant for a variety of reasons. for one, this man now, 29 years old, according to his attorneys, alleges that he was sexually abused as a young boy more than 100 times after he met jerry sandusky through as you noted, the charity that he founded, the second mile. this young boy makes the claim
that we had not heard until now. he says that he was threatened and that his family was threatened in an effort sandusky made to try to keep the boy quiet for all these years until now. this young man goes by the name john doe in this to remain anonymous throughout the course of the process but he does release a statement. for the first time we are hearing from one of the victims himself through this statement. and among the language that he uses, he says, i'm hurting and have been for a long time because of what happened but feel now even more tormented that i've learned of so many other kids who were abused after me. this young man suggests that he was allegedly assaulted at sandusky's home, on campus, and the penn state locker room. we reached out to jerry sandusky's attorney with the last hour and he has not gotten back to me yet. >> thank you with that developing news. we've got some news we're following on wall street where stocks are skyrocketing today. take a look at the dow. it is up over 300 points. in fact, 386 points. it was up more than 430 points
earlier today. and today's surge comes with the dow having lost about 900 points over the past two weeks. joining me now, co-anchor of cnbc's power lunch. what's behind what we're seeing here? >> what happened basically is that the central banks from around the world all got together and threw a life line to europe. wall street has been very worried about the debt on european banks and the impact that it might have on banks here at home. well, what happened was all of those central banks got together and said, you know what? let's make it very easy for some of those banks in europe to borrow from us at very low cost. so if they need money, they can get it at a very low, almost minimal interest rate. that ushered in a big sigh of relief to wall street. because it takes off the table that kind of armageddon scenario where you might see one or two major european banks falter. a lot of people think back to lehman brothers in 2008. it kind of takes that lehman
brothers scenario that we saw in the united states off the table. and that's what wall street is so encouraged about. >> thank you kindly. the dow up now over 380 points. greatly appreciate it. coming up, the senate takes a vote. the big question republicans say, how they'll pay for it. we'll get a live report from capitol hill. and later we'll hear from president obama who is in scranton, pennsylvania. we're following developing news after the uk embassy attack in tehran. britain issues an order to iran. plus, a 104-year-old woman and her 83-year-old daughter were just minutes away from eviction. wait until you hear who stood up for them. and join the conversation online. you name it. i've tried it. but nothing helped me beat my back pain. then i tried salonpas.
welcome back. as mentioned, president obama is scheduled to speak in scranton, pennsylvania where he is expected to talk about the tax cut that's due to expire at the end of the year. meantime the senate is expected to vote as early as tomorrow. not only on extending the tax cut but increasing it unless the extension is approved. tafls will go up for about 160 million americans at the beginning of the year. a family earning $50,000 a year would see their taxes increase $1,000 a year next year. now republican leaders say they are willing to support extending the tax break for another year. >> republicans will put aside their misgivings and support this extension, not because we believe as the president does that another short-term stimulus will turn this economy around. but because we know it will give
some relief to struggling workers out there who continue to need it. nearly three years into this presidency. >> nbc's luke russert joining us live. there are questions whether the tea party will be a spoiler here for republicans. >> there's always been questions like that in terms of the house and what can actually get through. i was talking to gop leadership aides who feel tax cut extension will go through. it won't go through this week because the one that will come up in the senate is not approved by republicans because they see the surtax on millionaires at 3.25% is a tax on so-called job creators. listen to house speaker john boehner talk about this issue, the pay roll tax this morning. >> there's no debate about whether these extensions ought to be paid for. the president has called for them to be paid for. democrats here have called for them to be paid for. so if in fact we can find common
ground on these extensions, i think you can take to the bank the fact they will be paid for. >> and tamron, the extension of the pay roll tax cut, the president wants it to go from 4.2% to 3.1%. that will cost the nation about $240 billion. now the idea is that a lot of that money will go back into the economy and help stimulate it. but that has a significant amount added to the debt that both sides want to figure out a way to pay for. obviously how to pay for that comes down to the contention which has divided the capital for a long time. >> we just showed speaker boehner. he once referred to grover norqvist. i think he said he was a random person. nonetheless that random person will be speaking to house republicans. what's going on there? >> well, november 3rd of this month, house speaker john boehner called americans for tax reforms grover norquist a random person.
the random person that is grover norquist will be addressing the house gop theme team thursday morning. this is a group of house gop members which really seeks to implement gop messaging on the house floor themselves take one-minute speeches and talk about the usual republican issues. in this case i suspect it would be about taxes. they talk with the national labor relations board and the perils of some forms of unionization. it will be an interesting thing to hear what grover norquist, the random person he called him a month ago, would tell the fellow republicans thursday morning if only every random person had that kind of access. >> take care. there's a nice capital visitor's center here for you. >> that's as far as they'll probably let me in. members of congress are being reminded today about ethics rules in place that prohibit insider trading. the memo was obtained by nbc news was handed out a few weeks after an investigative report raised questions by members of both parties including house speaker john boehner and house
democratic leader nancy pelosi to name two people. they both denied doing anything wrong. joining me to talk more about it, brody, thank you for your time. >> reporter: thanks for having me. >> in this memo that was obtained by nbc news, members and employees may obtain material nonpublic information about a public company from family, friends and acquaintances or from their involvement in a company. if a member or employee trades on this information, they may have engaged on insider trading and they go on to say then suze their office for private gain. we're talk b this after a 60 minutes report that was really explosive here. but we will also perhaps see hearings very soon. >> there's a hearing tomorrow in the senate and next tuesday in the house. the report that came out yesterday said that insider trading as defined is against the law. what the 60 minutes show was about and what the "wall street journal" has done a lot of reporting about is the information member of congress
get through their government duties that they can then trade on or perhaps more importantly, let a buddy know or let someone else know who can then trade on it. >> you pointed out, just only recently are we seeing even some members who were accused of behavior that could be similar to insider trading or insider trading get on board to bring in some legislation to control what i think many americans, many voters would see as something that certainly borders on what we would call wrong or even unethical. >> reporter: that's the issue. there has been a bill to outright ban insider trading. it has a total of about ten co-sponsors, in fact, less than that. now there are 120 co-sponsors so it is gaining real momentum. a hearing tomorrow, a hearing next week. and we'll see where it goes next year. >> thank you very much. we greatly appreciate you talking here. police take down two of the country's largest occupy camps.
hundreds are arrested. we'll have the latest. >> plus the confusion over a new report that found high levels of arsenic in fruit juice. what it means for you and your family. and the man who tried to assassinate president reagan is trying to get more free time outside of a mental hospital. but government lawyers say just this summer, john hinckley was at a book store reading about reagan and presidential assassins. rachel weeks, ceo of apparel company school house was manufacturing her products in sri lanka. she partnered with the durham, north carolina factory. she plans on continuing to expand her company locally committed to making products made in the usa. [ eva ] you know when you push your hair to the breaking point? that's me with the blow dryer and the flat iron
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the two largest remaining occupy encampments were cleared out this morning. there were more than 250 combined arrests while removing the last of the protesters. more than 200 arrests were made in los angeles. about 1,400 police officers raided the camp just after midnight. police say they had to use bean bags fired from shotguns to move the final three protesters who were camped out in the makeshift
tree house. the two-month-old camp was dismantled after a deadline passed for protesters to leave. to philadelphia where 52 protesters were arrested after refusing to leave a street near city hall. protesters were ordered to leave in part because of a $50 million renovation project is slated to begin at the city hall plaza next month. and we have an update on 24-year-old scott olson. that is the iraq war veteran who suffered a fractured skull at an occupy protest in oakland last month. witnesses say olson was hit in the head by a tear gas canister fired by police. he was unable to talk for weeks. last night he told msnbc's ed schultz, he is feeling much better. >> kind of weird to be a national news story like i became. but i'm happy to step into these shoes and guide this movement
and be somebody to look up to for some people. >> the oakland police department is still investigating exactly what happened there. coming up, ousted illinois governor rod blagojevich is set to be sentenced for corruption in a few days. we're learning just how much time prosecutors are asking for. plus, it is not your typical picture with santa. take a look at that. that is quite a pose. we'll tell you why all of these people are posing with, those are real guns with santa. and will beyonce have her baby before the year is over? her due date, at least some tidbits about it. let me tell you about a very important phone call i made. when i got my medicare card, i realized i needed an aarp... medicare supplement insurance card, too. medicare is one of the great things about turning 65, but it doesn't cover everything. in fact, it only pays up to 80% of your part b expenses. if you're already on or eligible for medicare,
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it's 4g, so you can do more faster. so, kathryn, post more youtube videos of your baby acting adorable. baby. on it. matt, ignore me and keep updating your fantasy team. huh? jeff, play a game. turbo-boosting now, sir. dennis, check in everywhere you go on foursquare. that's mayor dennis... of the water cooler. you're the best. liz, rock out to pandora. oh, no i'm an only child. and nick, you shouldn't even be here, you can do everything from the golf course. good? good. [ male announcer ] on at&t, blackberry® torch moves at the speed of 4g. ♪ welcome back. here's what the news naigs is following. president obama is about to speak at scranton high school where he will push republicans to extend the pay roll tax cut. we'll bring the president's
remarks to you live. the hinckley's palin. the man who shot president reagan wants a judge to grant him more freedom but prosecutors say he was looking for books on presidential assassins just this summer. and british officials are taking serious steps today in response to attacks on its embassy in iran. the foreign secretary says the uk is withdrawing its entire diplomatic staff from iran closing the embassy in london and ordering all of iranian official to leave the uk. earlier today iran said it tried to maintain calm during the attacks. british officials believe the iranian regime is behind it all. >> the idea that the iranian authorities could not have protected our embassy, or that this assault could have taken place without some degree of regime consent is fanciful. >> stephanie gosk joins me from london with the latest. what's going on now?
>> reporter: well, those are some tough words from him today in parliament. he said there was a deliberate lag in response at the embassy. he said it is a violation of iran's international responsibility to protect the embassy and the diplomatic officials that are inside of it. he says that they are complicit in that attack. and basically, when the reports first came out, it was that they were students and university protesters that were on the ground there. but nbc news has learned that senior members of the much feared besieged milissa were on the ground during the attack. it has had almost immediate repercussions. the fact that the uk's embassy in tehran has been closed. iranian diplomatic officials in london have essentially been kicked out. and we are seeing a response from other european countries as well in solidarity with the uk. both france and germany have recalled their ambassadors and tomorrow in brussels, there could be even further actions taken in the form of sanctions.
tamron? >> you mentioned possible further actions, stephanie. the prime minister david cameron said he is considering very tough action in response to this. >> reporter: one of the things that has been floated is an oil embargo which would be very damaging. already, iran is feeling the economic pinch from the sanctions that are out there. and this attack is in response to some of the sanctions that are announced earlier this month including this country serving all financial ties with iran and its central bank. all financial ties with any of its banks which is a american that you are they've never taken before. they're beginning to feel the pinch and there are some divisions reportedly amongst the conservative leaders of that country, disagreements on how they should respond to these sanctions. >> all right. thank you very much. and another developing story. the prime suspect in the disappearance of an american woman in aruba is now back in the u.s. after being released from jail in aruba.
meantime an appeals court has just rejected the prosecutor's bid to put him back in jail. he is expected to fly to new york. giordano was accompanied by his attorney, jose baez. the same attorney who defended casey anthony in her murder trial this year. giordano has denied any wrongdoing in the disappearance and presumed death of his traveling companion robyn gardner. he says she was swept out to sea while they were snorkeling august 2nd. hillary clinton becomes the first u.s. secretary of state to visit myanmar in more than half a century. it tops our look at stories around the news nation. they will test the commit many to reform among other things, clinton plans to press the formally military-run government to sever military and nuclear ties with north korea. and in the united kingdom,
take a look at this. 2 million public service workers are striking for 24 hours in what is being called the largest strike in decades. demonstrators are protesting changes to the system. the government wants to make union members work more and longer to get their pensions. a story we've been talking about. a 104-year-old woman and her 83-year-old daughter are safe in their atlanta home after deputies, sheriff's deputies, refused to kick them out. deutsche bank had ordered them to leave because of an unpaid balance. when the deputies arrived, they said they could not bring themselves to throw the women out on to the street. >> please don't come in. when i'm gone, you can all come out and could anything you want. >> they've been in that house for 53 years. she said she hopes a deal can be reached so they can stay.
justice department attorneys are urging a judge not to loosen restrictions on out of hospital visits for john hinckley. the man who tried to assassinate president ronald reagan in 1981. at a hearing today, hinckley's attorneys pushed a proposal that would allow the gunman more time away from the mental hospital where he's lived for the past three decades. if the proposal is approved, he could leave the hospital for as long as 24 days at a time before eventually living with his mother full time in virginia. nbc news justice correspondent pete williams is live for us in washington. it was some of the new information that we've learned about hinckley's behavior that is under question now. >> that's right. today justice department lawyer said to the judge, you can't trust john hinckley because he doesn't even tell the truth to his own doctors. they say the summer, he told his doctors that on one of the visits to his mother's house down in williamsburg, virginia. she lived in a gated community. that he went into town and saw a
movie, captain america. what the government lawyers say is that the secret service was watching him. that he never went to the movies. that he instead went to a book store where he was browsing through books about his assassination target, president reagan, and another book about presidential assassins. government lawyers say he has also misled his doctors about his interest in women. that he's been looking up pictures of his dentist on the internet, falsely claiming that she wanted him to see pictures of her and he has given conflicting stories to his doctors about whether he intends to marry his current girlfriend. since 2003, a federal judge has allowed generally gradually expanding visitation by hinckley down to williamsburg which is originally where his parents live. now his mother lives. she is in her mid 80s. right now he and his hospital doctors are asking for court permission to expand these visits, two visits. 17 days, and then another series of visits, as you said, to 24 days. ultimately leading to him being
placed basically as an outpatient in williamburg. the government said it is way too fast. that there are very many questions and he is deceptive and he could still be dangerous. they're asking the judge not to grant such an expansive request. >> thank you very much for that update. i want to take our audience to scranton, pennsylvania where the president has started speaking at scranton high school. >> with our brave member and women in uniform. thanking them for their service. and part of the reason he's going now is because pretty soon we'll all get a chance to say thank you. this holiday season is going to be a season of homecomings because by the end of december, all of our troops are going to be out of iraq. they're going to be back home.
now, i mentioned joe first of all because he loves scranton. he was born here in scranton. he spend his early years here in scranton. this town helped make him who he is. this is a town where he and so many of you grew up with a faith in an america where hard work matters. where responsibility matters. where if you stay true to those things, you can get ahead. where no matter who you are, no matter what you look like, whether you own a factory or you work on the factory floor, america is a place where you can make it if you try. that's why joe and i ran for this office. you are why we spent so much
time in this state a few years ago. because even then, those ideas, the idea that is at the very heart of the american dream, felt like it was slipping away for a lot of people. it was wonderful visiting with patrick and don and we were talking about the fact that patrick has been teaching in the school system for 25 years now. donna has been a graphic artist. but they're still worried about the washer/dryer goes out. if they have to do a car repair. things are tight. and they're pretty lucky that they have a good job, a steady job. for a lot of folks, it is a lot tougher. and we've gone through a difficult decade for middle class americans. more good jobs in manufacturing left our shores over the last decade. more of our prosperity was built on ricky financial deals. and homes that a lot of folks
couldn't afford. and a lot of you watched your incomes fall or your wages flat line. meanwhile the cost of everything from college to health care were all going up. and then after all that, the financial crisis hit because the irresponsibility of some on wall street and -- and that made things a whole lot tougher. today we all know folks who have spent months looking for work. we all know families making deep sacrifices just to get by. we all know young people who have gone to college. they've taken on a bunch of debt. now they're finding that the opportunity that they worked so hard to find is getting harder and harder to come by. so there is a sense of deep frustration among people who have done the right thing but don't see that hard work and
that responsibility pay off. that's not the way things are supposed to be. not here in america. but here today with all of you, i'm thinking about something that is just probably joe's favorite expression. and some of you know joe's story. he went through some tough times when he was a kid. and his father used to tell him, champ, when you get knocked down, you get up. you get up. and scranton, we've taken some punches the last few years. one thing i know about people in scranton, people in pennsylvania, and all across manager know we are tougher than tough time. we get up, we move forward. we don't give up. we get back up. even though our economic problems weren't caused
overnight so they won't be solved overnight, even though it will take a few more years to meet all the challenges that were decades in the making, we're fighting to make things right again. we're fighting to make sure that if you are working hard and you are carrying out your responsibilities and you're looking out for your family, that you can live a good solid middle class life. that is what america is all about. and we are going to be fighting for that every day, every week, every month, and every year that we're in office. we want an america where hard work is valued and responsibility is rewarded. we're fighting to rebuild an economy that restores security for the middle class and renews opportunity for folks that are trying to get into the middle class. we're fighting to build an economy that is not based on outsourcing and tax loopholes and ricky financial schemes. but one that is built to last. one where we invest in things
like education and small businesses. an economy that is built on manufacturing and building things again and selling they will all around the world. and we're going to keep fighting to make our economy stronger and put our friends and neighbors back to work to give our young people opportunities greater than the opportunities that we had. that's what we've been doing for the last three years. but two months ago i sent a particular piece of legislation to congress called the american jobs act. this is a jobs bill that will put more americans to work, put more money back in the pockets of working families. it contains ideas that historically have been supported by democrat and republicans. it's paid for by asking our
wealthiest citizens to pay their fair share. and independent economists said it would create up to 2 million jobs and grow the economy by as much as 2%. and that's what we need right now. here's the problem. there is a problem. folks in washington don't seem to be getting the message. when this jobs bill came to a vote, republicans in the senate got together and they blocked it. they refused to even debate it even though polls showed that two-thirds of americans of all political stripes supported the ideas in this bill, not one single republican stemmed up to say this is the right thing to do.
but here's the good news, scranton. just like you don't quit, i don't quit. so i said, look, i'm going to do everything that i can do without congress to get things done. so let's just look over the past several weeks. wemd we can't wait. we just went ahead and started taking steps on our own to give working americans a leg up in a tough economy. for homeowners, i announced a new policy that will help families refinance their mortgages and save thousands of dollars. for all the young people out
here, we -- [ cheers and applause ] we reformed our student loan process to make it easier for more students to pay off their debts earlier. for our veterans out here, and i see some veterans in the crowd. we ordered several new initiatives to help our returning heroes find new jobs and get trained for those new jobs. you shouldn't have to fight for a job when you come home after fighting for america. you shouldn't have to do that. and in fact last week, i was able to sign into law two new tax breaks for businesses that hire veterans. because nobody out here who is a veteran should -- we have to
make sure that they are getting the help that they need. and by the way, i think we're starting to get maybe to the republicans a little bit because they actually voted for this veterans bill. i was glad to see that. i was glad the democrats and republicans got together with this bipartisan legislation. now, there is a lot more to do though if we're going to get every american back to work who wants to work and rebuild an economy that works for every american. which is why we're going to give congress another chance to do the right thing with the american jobs act. we're going to give them another chance to help working families like yours. last year, both parties came together to cut pay roll taxes for the 10 cal household by $1,000. that's been showing up in your paychecks each week. you may not be aware of it
because times are tight but you actually got a tax cut of $1,000 this year. i know you hear a lot of folks on cable tv claiming that i am this big tax and spend liberal. next time you hear that, you just remind the people who are saying it that since i've taken office, i've cut your taxes. your taxes -- your taxes today, the average middle class family, your taxes today are lower than when i took office. just remember that. we have cut taxes for small businesses, not once, not twice, but 17 times. the average family's tax burden is among the lowest it's been in the last 60 years. so the problem is not that we've been raising taxes. we've been trying to give families a break during these tough times. here's the thing.
that pay roll tax cut that we passed in december of last year, it is set to expire at the end of this year. one month from now. if that happens, if congress doesn't act to extend this tax cut, then most of you, the typical middle class family, is going to see your taxes go up by $1,000 at the worst possible time. a young lady just said she can't afford that. it would be tough for you. it would also be a massive blow for the economy because we're not fully out of the recession yet. don't take my word for it. this is what every independent economist says. he can't let this tax cut lapse right now. that's why my jobs bill, part of the american jobs act was to extend this tax cut for another year. in fact it does one better. it says let's expand that tax cut. instead of a thousand dollar tax cut next year, the typical
working family under my plan would get a tax cut of $1,500. instead of out of your paycheck, it would be going into your pocket. now, that's money that you can spend on a small business right here in scranton. if you're a small business owner, my jobs bill will cut your pay roll taxes in half. if you've got 50 employees making $50,000 each, you can get a tax cut of nearly $80,000. that's money that you can then use to hire more workers and get this economy moving again. that's a good thing. now, this really should not be controversial. a lot of republicans have agreed with this tax cut in the past. the republican leader in the senate said it would, quote, i'm quoting here. it would put money back, a lot of money back in the hands of businesses and in the hands of individuals. that's what he said. another republican leader said it would help small business
owners create jobs and help their employees spend more money creating even more jobs. one republican even called it a, quote, conservative approach to help put our economy back on track. so what's the problem? the bad news is, some of those same republicans voted no on my jobs bill and those tax cuts. i don't know whether it is just because i proposed it. i don't know. they said no to cutting taxes for small business owners and working families. one of them said two years ago this would boost. what happened? republicans said they're the party of tax cuts. that's what they said. a lot of them have sworn an oath to never raise taxes on anybody as long as they live. that doesn't square with their vote against these tax cuts.
are they -- [ laughter ] how is it that they can break their oath when it comes to raising your taxes but not break their oath when it comes to raising tax for wealthy people? that doesn't make any sense. i mean, i hope that they don't want to just score political points. i hope they want to help the economy. this cannot be about who wins and loses in washington. this is about delivering a win for the american people. that's what this is about. you know, a $1,500, that's not a band-aid for middle class families. that's a big deal. how many people here could use an extra $1,500? i thought so. so i tell you what, scranton.
they may have voted no on these tax cuts once, but i'm already filled with the christmas spirit. there is some chill in the air. i saw some christmas decorations so i'm in a christmas spirit. i want to give them another chance. i want to give them a chance to redeem themselves. we're going to give them another chance. as early as friday, this friday, in a couple of days, we're going to give them a chance to take a simple vote on these tax cuts. if they vote no, then the typical family's taxes will go up by $1,000 next year. if they vote yes, the that typical family will have an extra $1,500 in their pocket. let's just be clear. if they vote no, your taxes go up. vote yes, you get a tax cut. which way do you think congress should vote? they should vote yes.
it's pretty simple. if you want to see what this will mean for your bottom line, we have this spiffy new tax calculator on our internet site. white house.gov. you can punch in your numbers and figure out what it would mean to your family. this is real money that would go into the economy at a time it needs it. now, i really do think your voices are getting through. some of the folks in congress are starting to say maybe we're open to this thing. maybe we'll be open to these tax cuts. that's good news. i want to make sure we do this responsibly. what i've said is to pay for this tax cut, we need to ask wealthy americans to pay their fair share. right? we're asking, what we've said is, let's ask the folks who have seen their incomes rise fastest, who have gotten bigger. at a breaks under bush, let's ask them to help out a little
bit. because they made it better through the recession than most of us. let's ask them to contribute a little bit more to get the economy going again. and i just want to point out, you know, i've done pretty well over these last few years. so i'm, i've said let me pay a little bit more. i promise you, i can afford it. i really can. we're asking people like me to sacrifice just a little bit so that you guys have a little bit of a leg up. and by the way, let me say this. when you talk to most folks who are making a million dollars a year, they are willing to do more if they're asked. warren buffett is a good example. they're willing to do more if they're asked. now, i mean, i don't want to
exaggerate. it's not like they're volunteering, you know. but if they're asked, if they feel like it will help middle class families, help grow the economy, help to reduce the deficit, they're willing to help. i can't tell you how many well to do folks i meet who say, look, america gave me a chance to succeed. somewhere along the line, somebody gave me a good education. somewhere along the line somebody gave me a college scholarship. somewhere along the line someone built the information and transportation networks that have helped my business grow. somewhere along the line, somebody gave me a shot. so now it's my turn to do the next generation that same good thing. i have to give something back to them as well. because scranton, this is something everybody in this audience understands. when you think about the history
of scranton and the immigrants who came here and worked hard, each successive generation doing a little bit better. you guys know that what america is about is that we're all in this together. that each of us has to do our own individual part but we also have to be looking out for one another. that's the very simple choice that's facing congress right now. are you going to cut taxes for the middle class and those who are trying to get into the middle class or you're going to protect massive tax breaks for millionaires and billionaires, many of whom don't even want those tax breaks. are you going to ask a few hundred thousand people who have done very, very well to do their fair share, or are you going to raise taxes for hundreds of millions of people across the country? 160 million americans? are you willing to fight as hard for middle class families as you do for those who are most fortunate? what is it going to be? that's the choice in front of congress.