US President Barack Obama unveiled a 33-billion-dollar package of tax cuts Friday to encourage small businesses to hire new workers, as he takes aim at 10 percent unemployment.
Obama, who has made job creation the top priority of his administration, spoke as the White House got a rare economic boost when GDP data showed growth for the fourth quarter at a higher than expected 5.7 percent.
“It is time to put America back to work. We have had two very tough years,” Obama said, as he toured a small factory in Baltimore, Maryland.
The proposal, which must be passed by Congress, would allow small businesses to claim a 5,000-dollar tax credit for every new employee they hire and to be reimbursed for Social Security retirement taxes on increased payrolls.
The firms will be allowed to claim the credit every quarter, so they do not have to wait until the end of the tax year to benefit from the plan, previewed by Obama on Wednesday in his State of the Union address.
The total cost of the proposal is 33 billion dollars, according to the White House.
Obama said the GDP growth estimate “affirms our progress and the swift and aggressive actions that made it possible,” arguing that his economic policies have staved off the threat of a second Great Depression.
“Just to give you perspective there, that’s the fastest economic growth in six years, and it’s a stark improvement over the rapid and terrible decline that we were experiencing one year ago.”
But Obama noted that although the economy was growing, a swift rise in job creation was lacking, meaning initiatives like the new hiring incentive were needed.
“Companies are recovering but not yet taking that next step and taking on somebody full time,” Obama said after touring Chesapeake Machine Company, a custom manufacturing and metal factory.
WATCH: Saturday Night Live airs Christmas special — that’s just one giant dig at the Electoral College
NBC's "Saturday Night Live" aired an opening skit that was just one giant attack on the electoral college.
A snowman introduced the segment, saying that we could look in on the holiday table conversation thanks to hacked Nest cams.
The skit featured a house in San Francisco, California, a second in Charleston, South Carolina and a third in Atlanta, Georgia.
Each dinner table debated impeachment, and the differences between President Donald Trump and his predecessor, President Barack Obama.
But then the snowman said that none of their votes matter.
"They'll debate the issues all year long, but then it all comes down to 1,000 people in Wisconsin who won't even think about the election until the morning of," the snowman said. "And that's the magic of the Electoral College."
Georgia mayor being recalled for racism resigns from office: report
Hoschton Mayor Theresa Kenerly resigned in a special city council meeting held on Saturday, the Atlanta Journal Constitution reported Saturday.
"The resignation came just days after Councilman Jim Cleveland resigned saying he‘d rather leave office on his own terms than face voters in a recall election next month," the newspaper reported. "Both resignations follow an AJC investigation launched seven months ago into claims that an African American candidate for city administrator was sidetracked by Mayor Theresa Kenerly because of his race."
Nine 2020 Democrats unite to demand DNC Chair Tom Perez scrap debate rules: report
The Democratic National Committee is facing a revolt for the party's 2020 presidential candidates for its restrictive debate rules.
"Nine Democratic presidential candidates, including the party's front-runners, are urging the Democratic National Committee to toss out the current polling and fundraising rules used to determine who appears in televised debates and reopen the exchanges to better reflect the historic diversity of the current field. The candidates say the rules exclude diverse candidates in the field from participating," CBS News reported Saturday evening.