House Republican leaders won something of an endorsement from the White House on Tuesday for a package of largely uncontroversial bills aimed at helping small businesses succeed.
The Jumpstart Our Business Startups, or JOBS Act, is actually six bills offered by different GOP lawmakers that have earned bipartisan support.
Though some Democrats pointed out that the House already passed four of the six bills in the package, White House spokesman Jay Carney said the package shows that Congress can move beyond partisan divisions, even if it's just "compromise on the margins."
"It goes right to the point that I've been making that conventional wisdom holds that we can't actually accomplish things that both the administration and a Congress controlled largely by the other party can agree on. But that's not true," Carney told reporters in his daily briefing.
Among the measures in the JOBS Act are items to ease regulations on raising capital and organizing before the money is in hand; to enable business start-ups to pool investments from smaller contributors; to change rules on registering small bank holding companies and to allow small firms breaks on certain Securities and Exchange regulations that prevent them from going public.
House Majority Leader Eric Cantor, R-Va., said Tuesday the secret to building the economy is get small businesses working again.
The bills would "make sure America is once again a startup country," he said, adding that he had not discussed the package with Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, though Reid has offered a similar package in the Senate.
Amy Brundage, a White House spokeswoman, said the president offered similar ideas in his American Jobs Act in September and in his Startup America Legislative Agenda sent earlier this month.
"Helping start-ups and small businesses succeed and create jobs is fundamental to having an economy built to last," Brundage said. "The president is encouraged to see that there is common ground between his approach and what Congressman Cantor outlined today, and we urge members of both parties in the House and Senate to come together on these provisions and do what the president called for in the State of the Union Address: send him a bill without delay."
The Associated Press contributed to this report.