Economy

• Increased infrastructure spending (roads, bridges, power plants…) (2009-2010) * Note: Bush was the first president since Herbert Hoover to not make infrastructure a priority

• Authorized the US auto industry rescue plan and two GMAC rescue packages (2009)

• Authorized the housing rescue plan and new FHA residential housing guarantees (2009)

• Authorized a $789 billion economic stimulus plan (American Recovery and Reinvestment Act) (Feb 17, 2009) * Note: 1/3 in tax cuts for working-class families; 1/3 to states for infrastructure projects; 1/3 to states to prevent the layoff of police officers, teachers, etc. at risk of losing their jobs because of state budget shortfalls

• Instituted a new rule allowing the public to meet with federal housing insurers to refinance (in as quickly as one day) a mortgage if they are having trouble paying (2009)

• Signed the Serve America Act (April 21, 2009)

• Authorized a continuation of the US financial and banking rescue plans initiated at the end of the Bush Administration and authorized TARP funds to buy “toxic assets” from failing financial institutions (2009)

• Authorized the “Cash for Clunkers” program that stimulated auto sales and removed old, inefficient, polluting cars from the road (2009); due to large response to program, signed Cash for Clunkers Extension (Aug 6, 2009)

• Convened a “jobs summit” to bring experts together to develop ideas for creating jobs (2009)

• Placed a 35% tariff on Chinese tires and a few other products such as pipes after China was found to be illegally “dumping” exports below cost (2009) * Note: Clinton, Bush I, and Reagan all refused to “get tough” on China’s predatory trade practices; Bush II refused four times during his presidency

• Ordered the FDIC to beef up deposit insurance (2009)

• Authorized the federal government to make more loans available to small businesses and ordered lower rates for federal loans to small businesses (2009) and signed a temporary extension of the Small Business Act (March 20, 2009)

• Signed Jobs for Main Street Act (Feb 24, 2010)

• Efforts to protect US firms’ trademarks, patents, and copyrights; signed Trademark Technical and Conforming Amendment Act (March 17, 2010)

• Secured authority to compensate certain furloughed federal employees (March 11, 2010)

• Signed Hiring Incentives to Restore Employment Act (March 18, 2010)

• Signed Airport and Airway Extension Act (April 30, 2010)

• Enhanced antitrust penalties and reforms (June 9, 2010)

• Signed Small Business Investment Act (June 17, 2010)

• Homebuyer Assistance and Improvement Act (July 2, 2010)

• Extension of Unemployment Compensation (July 22, 2010)

• FAA Air Transportation Modernization and Safety Improvement Act (Aug 10, 2010)

• Signed US Manufacturing Enhancement Act (Aug 11, 2010)

• Signed Small Business Jobs Act (Sept 27, 2010)

• Signed Worker, Homeowner, and Business Assistance Act (Nov 6, 2010); signed

• Extended unemployment benefits for one million workers and expanded coverage for some existing homeowners who are buying again (Nov 2010)

• Called on Congress to deliver a comprehensive “Jobs bill” (2010)

• Signed a bill to extend unemployment benefits set to expire (2010)

• Signed historic Wall Street reform bill (2010) * Note: Designed to reregulate and end abusive practices and promote consumer protections

• Signed the HIRE Act to stimulate the economic recovery (2010) * Note: The bill includes: tax cuts for small businesses who hire someone unemployed for at least two months; small businesses can write off their investments in equipment this year; etc.

• National Export Initiative established to enhance federal support (technical assistance, training, trade missions, etc.) and coordination efforts to help US businesses export products and services (2010)

• Forwarded initiatives to promote a “Wireless Broadband Revolution” (2010) * Note: Among other things, broadband is finally being considered as necessary infrastructure, with efforts to expand use, access, and spectrum…

• Expanded agricultural credit to farmers during current economic crisis (2010)

• Signed US Manufacturing Enhancement Act (2010)

• Signed Single Family Housing Mortgage Insurance (2010)

• Signed Tax Relief, Unemployment Insurance Reauthorization, and Job Creation Act (Dec 17, 2010)

• Signed America Competes (Reauthorization) Act (Jan 4, 2011)

• Extension of funding for federal support of transportation programs (Sept 16, 2011; March 4, 2011…); extension of funding for airports and airways (several piecemeal increases Aug 5, 2011; June 29, 2011; May 31, 2011 March 21, 2011… because of Republican opposition to full funding of construction, expansion, and improvements)

• Announced a comprehensive jobs proposal: cut payroll taxes for working families; incentives to hire the unemployed; reform unemployment insurance; incentives for businesses to hire “returning heroes,” federal supports to states to prevent loss of thousands of teachers and essential public workers; funding for infrastructure repair and construction and school modernization and construction projects; temporary payroll tax holiday… (September 2011)