Unemployment is our real deficit. Unemployment is not only the moral crisis of our time — leaving families homeless and dreams destroyed — but also an underlying cause of our federal government's increased levels of borrowing. Massive job losses following the 2008 financial crisis left us with fewer tax receipts and more people requiring benefits.
There's ultimately only one responsible way to reduce the federal deficit: Get everyone trained, working, and contributing to the tax base.
This is why I sponsored the Jobs Now Act, a 21st Century update to President Nixon's Comprehensive Employment and Training Act (CETA) program, to provide funding directly to local governments to train and hire millions of Americans to do crucial work in our communities.
This is why President Obama has proposed the comprehensive American Jobs Act to repair our nation's aging roads, bridges, and electrical systems while retraining millions to succeed in the global marketplace.
This is why economists, activists, and everyday citizens have called out for targeted spending to proactively protect our cities from the impacts of natural disasters, to educate our young children to one day compete in the global economy, and to undertake research to maintain our edge in medical and communications technologies.
I am serving in Congress first and foremost to address the issue on each and every American's mind: Jobs, Jobs, Jobs.