Another week of Jobs Not Cuts Protests

In the second week of the August congressional recess, locals have continued to keep the heat on their representatives and senators to actually start focusing on creating jobs instead of worrying about how many tax cuts to give the wealthy. These stories have largely been absent from the national news media's consciousness, but as we show in the video, local news stations have been doing a great job around the country actually paying attention to what citizens are saying on the streets. In Wisconsin, protestors showed up at a luncheon that Rep. Paul Ryan (R-WI) was scheduled to attend. (Ryan didn't leave them a lot of choice to present their views directly to him, as he's come under fire recently for refusing to hold regular town hall meetings, speaking instead to sympathetic groups that charge money to attend.)

Congressman Ryan says he's been listening to small businesses. "Small businessmen and women, they're all telling us 'stop spending money we don't have, get government off our backs, deal with regulations, keep taxes low.' So we can have some certainty. What's happening is the job creators don't know what's going to hit them next from government."

Protester Mike Peltier says, "Money that could be used to develop individual skills of people who are unemployed being given away to corporations and what we see with that process is some of the companies are just taking their money and running."

In Virginia, protesters went after Rep. Frank Wolf (R-VA) for his refusal to back local job creation measures.

They said he voted against backing funding for the St. Elizabeth's redevelopment project, which would bring about 20,000 jobs to the D.C. area.

"It would've been a huge stimulus to the economy," said Valarie Bachelor of Our DC. Three of the protesters were unemployed men from Ward 8, in Southeast D.C. which has notoriously high unemployment, the press release noted.

The three men held chains looped around one of their wrists with a different word attached to each chain. Standing together, it read "Wolf Job Killer."

"I'm here to hold Congressman Wolf accountable," John Lucas said. "He can do something about it, but he's sitting on his rump."

In downtown Cincinnati, Ohio, protesters demanded to be heard at Rep. Steve Chabots' office.

Those taking part in the rally say Congress has done a poor job creating work for those in the middle class. "They campaign on message of creating jobs and bringing America back to glory, yet not seeing that happen. In fact, we see benefits go to top 2 percent of country."

In South Florida, concerned citizens wanted a change in attitude from Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (R-FL).

Concerned citizens protested outside congresswoman Ileana Ros-Lehtinen's office Thursday. The group demanded that Congress get its act together and start focusing on job creation. "If we don't have jobs, we can't play the stock market, and we can't do any investing. We can't put money into our economy: We can't buy clothing, we can't buy food, we can't buy the things that we need in order to survive, so without a job there is no economy," Anna Kleinholz said.

The protesters were eventually allowed into the office to discuss their issues with a district director.

It's still amazing to me that three years after the greatest financial crisis since the Great Depression, with unemployment stuck above 9% that our leaders in Washington don't have a little urgency behind trying to get people back to work in this country. Instead, many in Congress want to go right back to the same policies of deregulation, cuts in services for the middle class, and tax cuts for the wealthy that produced that lackluster economy of the Bush years.  

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