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Obama touts rare bipartisan effort on veterans' jobs bill

In his weekly address, President Obama celebrated a rare moment of bipartisanship in Washington that aims to help veterans find work.

A bill that would boost unemployment services for veterans and eliminate a widely hated tax rule has passed the Senate and is expected to move through the House next week.

The bill started as a measure to repeal the current (but unimplemented) requirement that federal and state governments withhold 3 percent of all payments to government contractors, an idea aimed at ensuring proper tax collections that has since been discredited as a burden to both government and the private sector.

When the bill reached the Senate, an agreement was struck to add a new section to the bill that expands federal government help for veterans looking for work, the so-called "Vow to Hire Heroes" provision. 

"I was pleased to see the Senate put partisanship aside and come together to pass these tax credits," Obama said Saturday from the USS Carl Vinson.  "After all, standing up for our veterans isn’t a Democratic responsibility or a Republican responsibility – it’s an American responsibility."

The president said Veterans Day weekend is the right time to help those who have served the country.

"We ask these men and women to leave their families and their jobs and risk their lives to fight for our country," Obama said. "The last thing they should have to do is fight for a job when they get home."

The president said the federal government has hired 120,000 veterans and that his administration wants the private sector to hire 100,000 more.

Pete Kasperowicz contributed to this post.