Spending vs. jobs a Dem dilemma

WASHINGTON, Nov. 6 (UPI) -- The White House and the Democratic Congress are caught between the proverbial rock and hard place, pressured to cut spending and create more jobs, analysts say.

After Tuesday's elections skewed toward the Republican party, GOP pollster Neil Newhouse warned President Barack Obama and congressional Democrats ignore voters' angst over growing deficits and government intrusion in their lives at their own peril, the Washington publication Politico reported Friday.


"The Obama administration would do well not to underestimate the intensity of voter opinion on these issues -- or the impact they have on independent voters," Newhouse said.

Rep. Jim McDermott, D-Wash., acknowledges the nation faces "a long road back" to prosperity that extends beyond Wall Street to Main Street.

Democrats want to create jobs by pumping up highway construction. But at what level and over how many years is being debated. Rep. James Oberster, D-Minn., wants $80 billion over two years. Rep. Steve LaTourette, R-Ohio, wants to tap into unspent stimulus funds, but House Appropriations Committee Chairman Dave Obey, D-Wis., opposes it.

Rep. Jim Clyburn, D-S.C., proposes a 4-6-year program that would be financed by a securities transaction tax on the financial community.

"Transaction taxes -- that's a painless way," Clyburn said. "If you're sitting there on Wall Street, if you're Goldman Sachs, if you're making all this money, if you got all this federal money (in a bailout), and you are paying all these big bonuses to your folks, where is your contribution to this recovery? That's why it's painless."

Wall Street would likely view that differently, and rally its allies, such as Sen. Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., Politico said.

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