Obama Urges Passage of Small-Business Bill

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The Wall Street Journal
By: Jared A. Favole
August 17, 2010

President Barack Obama Tuesday urged Senate Republicans to stop what he said is the obstruction of legislation that would allow small businesses to tap capital and boost jobs growth.

Speaking in Seattle as part of a cross-continental tour to raise money for the Democratic party, Mr. Obama said he wants the legislation to be the first matter of business for the Senate to consider when it returns from a summer recess in September.

He criticized Republicans for not allowing a vote on the measure. Republicans, however, have criticized Senate Democrats for not allowing a vote on individual amendments to the legislation.

"Unfortunately a partisan minority in the Senate has been standing in the away of giving our small-business people a simple up or down vote on this bill," Mr. Obama said. He added, "Everyday this obstruction goes on, is another day small businesses somewhere in the country can't get a loan or can't get the tax cuts it needs to grow and hire."

The legislation includes a series of measures that would provide small businesses with access to capital.

Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell of Kentucky said Democrats have set the bill aside six times to work on other legislation. "So from the beginning this bill clearly wasn't a priority to them--until they realized that they didn't have anything to talk about when they go home in August," Mr. McConnell said in a statement.

He also said the Senate would take the bill up again in September.

Write to Jared A. Favole at jared.favole@dowjones.com

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