Entries in Business (3)


Business and Labor Leaders Agree on Immigration Sticking Point

iStockphoto/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) -- Business and labor leaders agreed on Saturday to a deal on the guest worker program, signalling a key development in the debate over immigration reform.

Sen. Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., briefed Dennis McDonough, White House chief of staff, on the agreement on Saturday. According to the New York Times, the agreement was reached on a Friday evening conference call between Schumer, Thomas J. Donohue, the president of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, and Richard L. Trumka, the president of the AFL-CIO, the nation's main federation of labor unions.

Pay for guest workers was reportedly one of the final sticking points in a deal, and a solution was worked out on the conference call that ensures guest workers will receive the higher of the prevailing industry wage as determined by the labor department and the actual employer wage, according to the New York Times.

The deal will start by allowing 20,000 new visas each year and could eventually grow to as many as 200,000 per year. Guest workers would also be allowed to pursue a path to citizenship. Before the agreement is made official, the eight senators who had been negotiating the deal -- often referred to as the Gang of Eight -- must sign off before the end of the weekend, says the New York Times.

Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio


Obama: Pass the Jobs Bill, Give Economy 'Jolt' It Needs

The White House(WASHINGTON) -- President Obama in his weekly address urges Senators to pass the American Jobs Act next week or risk facing an even weaker economy, saying his $447 billion bill will “provide our economy with the jolt that it really needs right now.”

“This jobs bill can help guard against another downturn here in America,” Obama says. “This isn’t just my belief.  This is what independent economists have said.  Not just politicians.  Not just people in my administration.  Independent experts who do this for a living have said that this jobs bill will have a significant effect for our economy and middle-class families all across America.  But if we don’t act, the opposite will be true – there will be fewer jobs and weaker growth.”

The president challenges Republicans in Congress who say they have a better plan to “prove it.” Citing economists who claim Republicans’ proposals would not result in near-term economic growth, the president says “if their plan doesn’t measure up, the American people deserve to know what it is that Republicans in Congress don’t like about this jobs plan.”

As for his plan to lower the deficit by asking “millionaires and billionaires to pay their fair share,” Obama explains “some see this as class warfare.  I see it as a simple choice.”

“We can either keep taxes exactly as they are for millionaires and billionaires, or we can ask them to pay at least the same rate as a plumber or a bus driver.  And in the process, we can put teachers and construction workers and veterans back on the job.  We can either fight to protect their tax cuts, or we can cut taxes for virtually every worker and small business in America.  But we can’t afford to do both.  It’s that simple,” the president concludes.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio


Obama's Weekly Address: 'The Lesson on Display at Intel'

Photo Courtesy - Getty Images(WASHINGTON) -- After his two-day swing to the West Coast where he dined with business leaders and toured Intel President Obama says that the nation needs to create the next Intel, the next Google and the next Microsoft.
“If we want to win the global competition for new jobs and industries, we’ve got to win the global competition to educate our people,” President Obama says in his weekly address. “We’ve got to have the best trained, best skilled workforce in the world.  That’s how we’ll ensure that the next Intel, the next Google, or the next Microsoft is created in America, and hires American workers. “
The message is one that the president not only carried with him to the West Coast but one he’s been hammering home since the State of the Union address at the end of January. Taped from inside Intel after a tour the president uses his weekly address to hold up Intel as an example of a company that competes even as global competition has intensified over the years.
“Companies like Intel are proving that we can compete -- that instead of just being a nation that buys what’s made overseas, we can make things in America and sell them around the globe,” Obama says, “  Winning this competition depends on the ingenuity and creativity of our private sector -- which was on display in my visit today.  But it’s also going to depend on what we do as a nation to make America the best place on earth to do business. “
Next week President Obama will travel to Cleveland, Ohio to hold a jobs forum with local businesses “to get ideas about what we can do to help their companies grow and create jobs.”

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio

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