Senate Majority Whip Dick DurbinDick DurbinEffort to overhaul archaic election law wins new momentum Senate panel advances bill blocking tech giants from favoring own products Manchin, Collins leading talks on overhauling election law, protecting election officials MORE (D-Ill.) said, at the moment, Democrats in Congress don’t have the votes to pass President Obama’s jobs bill, but Durbin added that that situation would change.
“Not at the moment, I don’t think we do, but, uh, we can work on it,” Durbin said, according to Chicago radio station WLS.
President Obama has been calling for Congress to pass his American Jobs Act since legislators returned from their August recess. The jobs plan is made up of a combination of tax increases on the wealthy, new infrastructure spending, an extension of the employee payroll-tax cut and additional funding for unemployment insurance benefits.
Republicans have voiced opposition to the plan, albeit less than with other pieces of legislation Democrats have proposed recently.
Durbin added that the president’s bill would need bipartisan support because there are senators both on the left and the right opposed to aspects of it.
“The oil-producing-state senators don’t like eliminating or reducing the subsidy for oil companies,” Durbin said. “There are some senators who are up for election who say ‘I’m never gonna vote for a tax increase while I’m up for election, even on the wealthiest people.’ So, we’re not gonna have 100 percent of Democratic senators. That’s why it needs to be bipartisan and I hope we can find some Republicans who will join us to make it happen.”