President Obama on Monday urged congressional Republicans to support new ways of helping the nation's returning military veterans find jobs in a sluggish economy.
"Our veterans did their jobs. It's time for Congress to do theirs. It's time for them to put country before party," Obama said in the Rose Garden, flanked by leaders of veterans' groups.
The unemployment rate among America's post 9/11 veterans hit 12.1 percent last month, according to the Labor Department.
That figure is higher than the national unemployment rate that currently stands at 9 percent.
The president wants lawmakers to approve tax credits for businesses to hire unemployed veterans or injured veterans who have been out of work.
The Senate is expected to consider the measures this week.
Saying he didn't want to wait for Congress to act, Obama said his administration would help veterans match their skills to job openings and access job banks.
He announced that veterans will be able to download a "Veteran Gold Card" that will be issued by the Labor Department.
The card will help veterans to get six months of personalized case management, assessment, and counseling at career centers.
The White House estimates the gold card could help more than 200,000 unemployed veterans who served after the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks.
"Just as you fought for us we are going to keep fighting for you," Obama said.