US Chamber’s Bruce Josten: 112th Congress Will be Reacting to Previous Congress

US Chamber’s Bruce Josten Predicts 112th Congress will be Reacting to Legislation Passed by Previous Congress

Neal Asbury opened the show by praising the reading of the US Constitution during the swearing-in ceremony of the 112th Congress. “It was a great idea and a breath of fresh air. They should repeat this during every swearing-in ceremony.”

This notwithstanding, the new Congress has their work cut out for them. Asbury noted that while the unemployment rate dropped to 9.4 percent, that still represents 15 million unemployed Americans, and doesn’t even take into account “shadow” unemployment, the millions who have given up looking for jobs and are off the radar screen.

“We need to get people back to work so we can feel good again,” said Asbury.

Bruce Josten, executive vice president for Government Affairs at the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, made a return appearance on Neal Asbury’s “Truth for America.” Josten reiterated the common belief that the first priority of the new Congress will be to repeal major parts of the ObamaCare program by “surgically removing parts of the Bill that aren’t acceptable.”

“They won’t succeed in the Senate or with the President, but it will send a strong message that Congress has to bend the cost curve down to fund the ObamaCare bill,” said Josten.

Josten is confident that ObamaCare will come before both federal and state courts to address lawsuits brought forth that deem ObamaCare unconstitutional.

In addition to ObamaCare, Josten thinks that the Congress will be looking at financial regulatory reform. “Congress needs to step in and take back control of regulations. Regulatory agencies today now issue final rules before the bill is even up for comment,” said Josten.

Another priority will be creating a new framework for a discussion of energy and environmental policies. But it can’t become a “witch hunt,” or it will turn people off.

Yet, jobs will continue to be the focus. While some people are disappointed that the Bush tax extensions are only for two years, Josten believes that the two year extension is the best deal the GOP could hope to achieve. Yet, it won’t make a dent in bringing down unemployment

“The US must generate 330-350,000 jobs a month to get people back to work to pre-recession levels. But this could take 8-9 years to rehire the current unemployment and current employees that may become unemployed. We have a very long way to go,” said Josten. He added that this is only possible if the GDP hits 3.5 percent annually during that time.

For President Obama to win reelection in 2012, Josten thinks that unemployment must drop below 9 percent, housing must rebound and the stock market must show continued strength.

“In 2012, if people are feeling better, that’s good for Obama and bodes well for his reelection,” concludes Josten.

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