Obamas Tout Vets Jobs Plan as Bus Tour Ends

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President Obama is wrapping up another bus tour designed to push Congress to pass his jobs plan.

The tour is also aimed at winning votes for 2012, with his latest trip focused on the important swing states of North Carolina and Virginia.

However, sliding poll numbers suggest the president has a tough campaign road ahead.

Repackaging the Jobs Bill

Since the Democrat-controlled Senate rejected the bill last week, the president is changing strategy by breaking the measure into bite-sized pieces.

Phil Kerpen is vice president of Americans for Prosperity and author of the new book "Democracy Denied: How Obama is Ignoring You and Bypassing Congress." He offered his analysis of the president's new jobs on CBN News Channel Morning News, Oct. 20. 

One of those pieces is designed to help the nation's veterans obtain employment.

"One of the votes I'm going to urge them, members of Congress to take, is on whether or not they think it's a good idea to offer companies incentives to hire the men and women who have risked their lives for our country," the president said in a speech Tuesday at Langley Air Force Base in Hampton, Va.

"These members of Congress -- they work for you and if they're not delivering, it's time you let them know," Obama told the 2,000 military service men and women who made up the audience.

The veteran jobs plan includes a deal with private sector companies like Tyson Foods and Hewlett Packard to hire 25,000 veterans and military spouses by 2013.

"If you can oversee millions of dollars of assets in Iraq, you can help a business balance its books here at home," Obama said.
First lady Michelle Obama joined the president at Tuesday's event. Helping military families is one of her signature causes.

"It's good for their bottom line. It's good for business," Mrs. Obama said. "Because they know that veterans and military spouses, like all of you here today, represents the best our country has to offer."

Re-election Bid?
While White House officials say the tour is all about the jobs bill, many see it as an important trip for his re-election campaign.

"Everything from now until November 2012 is going to be, some aspect, about the campaign," CBN News Political Editor John Waage said.
In 2008, Obama won Virginia with 53 percent of the vote, and barely won North Carolina with 50 percent.
Many say he'll need those votes again next year to hold on to the presidency. The task could prove to be an uphill battle with his approval rating sliding in both states.
A recent Quinnipiac poll shows only 42 percent of Tar Heel voters approve of Obama's job performance.
His approval rating stands at 45 percent in Virginia where voters elected Republican Gov. Bob McDonnell just one year after the state helped Obama take the White House.

"He's blaming the Tea Party, House Republicans, Wall Street for the problems," McDonnell said. "Don't go out there and blame everybody else and say it's not my problem."

"You're the leader," he continued. "Lay out a vision for people because that's what the independent voters are voting on."

"No wonder he's underwater because they want to see results and they want to see less rhetoric," McDonnell said.
The president hopes this personal touch will help him reconnect with independents. The move, however, appears to have fallen flat with some voters.

Virginia resident Darcie Cole voted for the president in 2008, but said she wouldn't vote for him a second time.

"Just not been happy with exactly what he's done," she said.

Virginia resident James Jordan, who also voted for Obama, told CBN News, "I don't know that I know how I feel now."
The president knows Virginia and North Carolina are must win states - just one reason why Democrats are holding their convention in Charlotte, N.C., next summer.

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CBN News
Efrem Graham

Efrem Graham

News Anchor & Reporter

Efrem Graham is an award-winning journalist, who comes to CBN News from the ABC owned and operated station in Toledo, Ohio.  He received his master's degree from the Columbia University Journalism School. He also holds a bachelor's degree in English Literature from the Richard Stockton College of New Jersey.  Follow Efrem on Twitter @EfremGraham and "like" him at Facebook.com/EfremGrahamCBN.