The President and Congressional leaders had a photo-op yesterday, and everyone left confident, basking in the glow of compromise and convinced that progress can be made in the months leading up to the election. In fact, they all said that the JOBS Act has a serious chance of passing.
“We discussed a number of areas where I believe there’s common ground between the two political parties, particularly on jobs and on energy, and I’d like to think that some of the bipartisan bills that we have moved through the House will … be taken up soon by Democrats over in the Senate,” Boehner later told reporters at a news conference with McConnell.
In particular, Boehner cited what he called Obama’s support for a House Republican proposal called the JOBS act, short for “Jump-starting Our Business Startups,” that is comprised of six measures aimed at removing barriers to small business investment.
“The president was very optimistic about moving that bill through the House,” Boehner said of the measure expected to come up for a vote next week. “Frankly, it was a very good luncheon, and I’m encouraged by the attitude and the tone that we had during the meeting.”
Wow, the JOBS Act can pass! I guess we’ll all have jobs soon. Wait, what’s that acronym? Jump-starting Our Business Startups (isn’t that J-SOBS, really)? So what’s that all about?
However, one senior House Democratic aide expressed skepticism at the GOP move to reach across the aisle and circulated press clips describing the Republican JOBS bill as simply a collection of items Democrats had already offered.
A-ha. And the bill itself?
The JOBS Act is not new legislation but is instead a grab bag of items that have already passed at the committee level or on the House floor by wide bipartisan votes. The package, introduced by House Majority Leader Eric Cantor (R-Va.), would tweak or update various Securities and Exchange Commission regulations that in some cases haven’t been updated since the 1960s. Republicans believe the changes would make it easier for small businesses to launch initial public offerings and solicit new investors.
Mm-hm. So the road to new jobs for everyone goes through the SEC. Because so many small businesses are just stymied by the inability to launch an IPO. I was just talking to the guy at the hardware store last week, he was hoping to open at $8 a share and sell 500,000 or so on the first day.
I’m agnostic on whether this is a problem that needs solving (the initial bill, introduced by Blue Dog Jim Himes, passed in November 420-2). I’m certain that the only relationship this bears to jobs is the acronym, and not really even that.
Congress is an elaborate prank, right?