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Lack of action is shocking; President, Congress must work together to help the nation's 14 million jobless

The burning issue facing our country is that 14 million people are out of work, but our government in Washington can't get its act together to do anything about it.

Our leaders should be the ones out of work.

The president presented his jobs bill with great fanfare, and the Senate shot it down. Then the Republicans, who have had nothing positive to offer, slapped together their jobs proposal, and it was worse than the president's.

Now the White House says it will try to gain passage of President Obama's jobs bill piecemeal.

That would be fine if the White House would pick only those pieces that are assured to be effective. But the failure of leadership by Obama and Congress has resulted in aides putting together their bills based on philosophical economics that are not guaranteed to produce anything -- particularly anything soon.

Republican candidates have been beating the drum to remove the roadblocks the Obama administration has put in the way of new hiring by businesses. They are right, but Obama can't get away from his focus on reforming society for the underprivileged. He doesn't seem to realize that he's taking middle-class families and turning them into the unemployed.

When one asks why Obama is behaving in such a non-productive manner, hindsight is very instructive. Quite simply, there was little in his experience that prepared him to be president, particularly at a time when the nation is suffering so badly.

The president's jobs plan would be financed by a 5.6 percent surtax on millionaires. The White House has tried to sell the business community on it being a $265 billion tax reduction for employers, but it's financed with a permanent $500 billion tax hike on them.

How the White House expects taking money away from businesses will translate into their hiring is not just a mystery; it's a joke.

We continue to believe Obama is making a huge mistake by devoting less than one-fourth of his jobs bill to public works projects that could result in the hiring of more than a million workers to fix roads, bridges and other infrastructure. And remember that those public facilities badly need fixing.

It's way past the time for the president and Congress to stop their bickering and do something for the unemployed. Their lack of action borders on the scandalous.

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