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Obama: Economists back my jobs plan

President Obama said Saturday that independent experts and economists support his jobs plan, and he demanded that Republicans prove they have a better proposal.

"This jobs bill can help guard against another downturn here in America," the president said in his weekly address. 

"This is what independent economists have said. Not just politicians. Not just people in my administration. Independent experts who do this for a living have said that this jobs bill will have a significant effect for our economy and middle-class families all across America."

The Congressional Budget Office on Friday said that Obama's jobs plan “could have a noticeable impact on economic growth and employment in the next few years.”

The CBO said that the original Obama stimulus bill would involve $447 billion in tax cuts and new spending — the same estimate given by the administration. It said the bill would raise $450 billion over ten years. The result is a $3 billion decrease in deficits over ten years.

The GOP says the Obama package is a permanent tax increase in exchange for temporary stimulus that is unlikely to reduce 9.1 percent unemployment.

Obama said his plan would "cut taxes for virtually every worker and small business," while "asking millionaires and billionaires to pay their fair share."

The president also challenged his political opponents to explain opposition to his "American Jobs Act."

"Any Senator out there who’s thinking about voting against this jobs bill needs to explain why they would oppose something that we know would improve our economic situation," Obama said. "If the Republicans in Congress think they have a better plan for creating jobs right now, they should prove it."

In the Republican weekly address, Sen. John Thune (R-S.D.) called Obama's proposal "a rehash of the same failed ideas he’s already tried."

Thune said, "If the president is finally ready to get serious about helping businesses hire more workers, he can rein in his runaway bureaucracy that seems to be doing all it can to destroy jobs rather than create them."