Obama comes to Reid’s aid in Ne­vada

Austin American-Statesman - - WORLD & NATION - By Erica Werner

LAS VE­GAS — Mix­ing pol­icy and pol­i­tics Fri­day, Pres­i­dent Barack Obama called on Congress to ex­pand a clean en­ergy tax credit that could pay off in Ne­vada, where Se­nate Ma­jor­ity Leader Harry Reid is strug­gling in his re-elec­tion cam­paign.

Obama told an au­di­ence at the Uni­ver­sity of Ne­vada that a $5 bil­lion in­crease in clean en­ergy man­u­fac­tur­ing tax cred­its could gen­er­ate nearly 40,000 jobs. Some of those could ar­rive in Ne­vada, where 14 per­cent un­em­ploy­ment threat­ens to un­der­mine Reid’s ar­gu­ment that his po­si­tion as ma­jor­ity leader pays div­i­dends to his state.

“If an Amer­i­can com­pany wants to cre­ate jobs and grow, we should be there to help them do it,” said Obama, who was wrap­ping up a two­day cam­paign­ing swing through Mis­souri and Ne­vada.

Reid, who is seek­ing a fifth term, has been push­ing hard for in­vest­ments in so­lar en­ergy to cap­i­tal­ize on his home state’s scorch­ing cli­mate. He’s had some suc­cess at­tract­ing projects to the state, but he and other Democrats are bat­tling up­hill go­ing into Novem­ber’s piv­otal midterms.

Al­though Obama ap­plauded both Democrats and Repub­li­cans for sup­port­ing his call for the ex­panded tax cred­its, he took a swipe at GOP law­mak­ers, say­ing sim­i­lar bi­par­ti­san sup­port has been ab­sent from many of the other ef­forts he and Reid have pro­moted, from the mas­sive health care over­haul to Wall Street re­form.

“At ev­ery turn, we’ve met op­po­si­tion and ob­struc­tion from lead­ers across the aisle,” he said.

With na­tional un­em­ploy­ment hov­er­ing near 10 per­cent, and ex­pected to re­main around that level through the end of the year, ad­min­is­tra­tion of­fi­cials know the pres­i­dent’s mes­sage on the econ­omy is a tough sell — con­vinc­ing Amer­i­cans that the econ­omy would be a lot worse with­out the pres­i­dent’s poli­cies, most no­tably the $862 bil­lion eco­nomic stim­u­lus.

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