The AFL-CIO and the US Chamber of Commerce have issued a joint statement praising President Obama for his call to invest in infrastructure during his State of the Union address. Richard Trumka explained the decision during this interview with CNN's John King and stressed the importance of getting Americans back to work and what it means for our economy.
I was especially glad to hear him say this and beat back the beltway Villager common wisdom on the need for austerity measures.
KING: You're in Davos and there was a report issued here in the United States today. I don't want to dive into the weeds of it about what happened, what caused the financial collapse back in 2008. What is the global sense there? Is there optimism? Is there still unease? Is it still sort of a, we're not sure what's around the corner?
TRUMKA: I think it's a little bit of both, John. There is a little bit of optimism, but I think there's still a lot of concern. We had a panel that I was on, and we had people from every different sector that was on the panel. They're concerned about this big kick towards austerity. They think that it can kick us back into recession. They're afraid that in our government, for instance, that the Republicans won't look at things realistically, they'll never raise revenue. So we won't be able to fix the deficit problem that we have in the midterm and long term.
I would say it's mixed. I would say there's skepticism. There's some optimism as well. There's some good signs out there. So we work together and if we can get this infrastructure program going in the United States, creates some other momentum, we can get jobs growing, and then we'll have a real recovery. Right now, Wall Street is seeing a little bit of a recovery, but Main Street has not seen a recovery, because we haven't seen any jobs created or enough to fill the hole that was created by the recession. And I think that's pretty much true around the globe. Everybody is saying a recovery happens when we have people back to work.
Amen brother. Here's more from the AFL-CIO on the joint statement -- AFL-CIO and Chamber Agree on Obama’s Call for Infrastructure Rebuild.
I don't have a lot of love lost for the Chamber's Tom Donahue, but how pitiful is it when even he is looking way more rational than the House Republicans when it comes to spending measures? Now the question is, will they listen to him?