Reid talks about jobs w/ Democrats

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid wrapped up a debrief w/ his Caucus on the jobs package that could be introduced as early as next week.

Reid tasked Senators Durbin and Dorgan earlier in the year with putting a package together, and as yet, according to numerous aides, the package is not quite finished.

Still – there are a number of things we know are in it: tax cuts for small businesses, an extension of the highway bill through December, “Build America” bonds for infrastructure, and an extension of both COBRA and unemployment insurance.

Senate Finance Committee Chairman Max Baucus took umbrage with others stepping on his turf of taxes, and he told Reid that he wanted a markup of legislation in his committee .

One senior Senate Democratic leadership aide told Fox that Baucus will very likely get his way, though Reid will give Baucus an abbreviated schedule in which to complete his portion of the bill.

Right now – Democrats must decide whether to go with a tax credit, authored by Senators Feingold and Casey, OR a payroll tax break authored by Senators Schumer and HATCH.

We should expect Democrats to have gotten the message from Massachusetts --- there will be lots of floor debate and consideration of amendments, according to sources.

Reid told reporters today of the jobs package, “We are going to have a jobs agenda. We're going to do more than one thing. We have -- we're -- we have a plan. And we will announce that sometime next week. It's a plan that I think is very meaningful. It will look at a broad view of what we need to do with jobs. And it'll look at a more narrow view.

“And I think it'll give the Republicans an opportunity to -- to work with us. It'll be so glaringly apparent to the American people if we don't get a few Republican votes to support us that they are not interested in any success to the American if they are continually going to say no. I hope that's not the case.”


“We're going to have a long-term employment package and a short-term. The Congressional Budget Office has given us half a dozen things that will create jobs now, not a year from now, but right now. And we're going to -- we're going to have a long-term employment package and a short-term employment package.”