Obama jobs council releases new recommendations

If Obama treats the recommendations of his jobs council like he did the deficit-and-debt-reduction recommendations of the Erskine-Bowles debt commission, then this matters not at all. Nevertheless, the ideas his latest council presented are worth considering for their own sake:

Obama’s jobs council is calling for an overhaul of the corporate tax structure, expansion of domestic petroleum drilling and a raft of reforms to federal regulation.

As first reported by Reuters, the new corporate tax rates should sink to “internationally competitive levels,” the report says, as well as an “all-in strategy” to cut reliance on foreign fuels by promoting domestic sources.

This is just the latest in the new stream of GOP-sounding policy proposals coming from the White House this year. Last week the proposal was to streamline the government by consolidating federal agencies.

Not surprisingly, these recommendations resonated with Republicans in the House, who have not merely suggested similar approaches to job creation, but have also passed bills to expand domestic energy production and reduce regulation:

The long-term recommendations, a year in the making, have been met with support from Republicans, particularly the call for significant tax reform and increased domestic oil production. “President Obama’s own panel of experts has endorsed the approach to job creation House Republicans have been pursuing for more than a year,” House Speaker John Boehner, R-Ohio, said.

“American job creators understand that we must ease the regulatory burden on small businesses, foster private-sector innovation, transition to a more competitive tax system, and utilize the vast energy resources we have here at home. Nearly 30 House-passed job bills are awaiting action in the Senate, most of which address the recommendations made today. With American small businesses still suffering from the misguided policies implemented by the president, there is no excuse for these pro-growth bills to collect dust any longer,” Boehner said.

The president today boasted that he hasn’t let the jobs council’s previous recommendations collect dust; he claims he’s implemented at least 16 of the council’s 35 executive action recommendations. You can bet, though, he’ll do little to forward these proposals. He’s already warned that getting congressional action “in an election year” will be difficult (by which he means he hopes Congress won’t take action so as not to spoil his “do-nothing Congress” narrative). The recommendations will serve as a nice talking point for the president’s State of the Union address next week and no doubt Obama will point to the recommendations of “his” jobs council on the campaign trail, but he won’t take more than symbolic action (of the “we can’t wait” unilateral variety) on the most pressing issue the nation faces between now and election day.