Economic poll; Calls for national infrastructure bank; Obama to call for $300 billion jobs plan

Lots to talk about this afternoon:

LEADING OFF: A majority of New Yorkers surveyed by Siena College believe the country’s economic glory days are behind us. Fifty percent of those surveyed feel that the U.S. economy will not regain its past form, compared to 45 percent who believe that the current economic issues are temporary.

  • MY TAKE: The president and Congress have failed. They have failed to spur job growth but nearly as important, they have failed to demonstrate to the American people that they are capable of working jointly towards boosting productivity. That is why confidence in the economy’s ability to recover is at such low levels. However, looking purely at America’s businesses – from Fortune 500 companies down to the small businesses – those that are well-managed already have all of the tools needed to recover fully from the current malaise. If the federal government signals it is ready to cooperate (or if it becomes desperate enough to do so) then people will respond with more confidence and in turn more spending.   

FROM THE “HAVE WE HEARD THIS BEFORE” DEPARTMENT: Rep. Nita Lowey (D-18) called for a national infrastructure bank to be established, and has said she will fully support legislation introduced by Rep. Rosa DeLauro (D-CT) that would kick-start this endeavor by investing $5 billion each year for the next 5 years.

  • What Westchester County Association President William Mooney says:  “The Westchester County Association commends Congresswoman Lowey for her leadership in creating a National Infrastructure Bank. As we’ve identified in our economic development initiative The Blueprint for Westchester, the region’s economy–and our ability to attract and retain business here–is dependent on a functional infrastructure system. A more modern infrastructure will help Westchester and the region meet future energy, technology, transportation, and telecommunications needs, and bring needed jobs to the region.”

ALL EYES ON OBAMA: Pres. Obama will unveil the “American Jobs Act” in a nationally-televised speech tonight before both houses of Congress. Spokesman Jay Carney said in interviews today that the bill would be ready to be submitted to Congress within a week, along with a provision to pay for the proposals included.

  • GOP already fired up: Sen. Mitch McConnell, who emerged from the debt ceiling talks remarkably unscathed (so far as I can tell), had this to say (from a speech made on the Senate floor) – “The definition of insanity, Albert Einstein once famously put it, is to do the same thing over and over again and expect a different result. Frankly I can’t think of a better description of anyone who thinks the solution to the problem is another stimulus. The first stimulus didn’t do it. Why would another?”

Siena College poll shows New Yorkers are pissed off about the economy

Busy day today – my apologies for not having a more thorough post but more to come tomorrow.

BREAKING NEWS: It is still raining. The Bronx River is still flooding.

In all seriousness, Siena College released a poll today that queried New York residents about their feelings on the economic climate. Some snippets:

  • 50% of those polled said the country’s best economic days have passed it by (up from 47% who shared that sentiment in 2010 and 45% in 2009).
  • 64% believe government is not helping the nation’s economy.
  • 56% have withdrawn money from savings or retirement funds to meet daily expenses since 2007.
  • 30% said they lost a job during the past four years.

Check back in the a.m. for some analysis!