President Obama’s jobs bill, as written, died a predictable death in the Senate last night. Democrats were able to muster fifty-one votes for passage, but that’s well short of the sixty needed to overcome a Republican filibuster.
The New York Times called the vote both a “major” and “significant” setback for Obama in this morning’s edition, but in reality this was to be expected from the outset. No amount of press conferences, stump speeches or Congressional addresses would realistically advance the American Jobs Act past Mitch McConnell’s iron grip on his forty-nine-member caucus, which can filibuster the bill into oblivion. And even if it somehow passed the Senate, the Tea Party–dominated House would never touch the bill.
So now comes phase two: beating up Republicans for standing in the way of job-creating legislation while using that pressure to hopefully at least get parts of the bill passed.
White House Communications Director Dan Pfieffer tweeted a picture of the Cincinnati Enquirer’s front page this morning, which features a blaring headline above the fold: “GOP kills jobs package.” Headlines like that in swing states like Ohio must make the GOP nervous, and the administration doesn’t plan to let up.