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MY TURN

'The president talks a good game, but where are the jobs?'

Federal regulations burden businesses

President Obama arrives in New Hampshire today to do what he does best: talk jobs. It's hardly the first time. Back in February 2010, he declared to a Nashua audience: 'Jobs has to be our number one focus.'

With national unemployment still at 9 percent, the president must have lost focus.

Twenty months later, the president's back - still doing little more than talking. In Washington, he's done nothing to successfully induce job creation and promote economic growth, and New Hampshire has had enough of his empty promises. In a recent Bloomberg poll, 53 percent of New Hampshire voters disapprove of the job he's doing.

Here in the Granite State, voters are upset with the direction of our country - and disappointed in the president's utter inability to turn things around.

What is especially troubling, though, is that the president hasn't just failed to spur economic growth, he's stood firmly in its way. His policies have done more to impede job creation than to promote it.

Through massive regulations, threats of tax hikes, and the reckless accumulation of debt, he's burdened job creators in a time when we should be freeing businesses to hire American workers.

And just one month after that February 2010 declaration that jobs were his 'number one focus,' the president erected the biggest roadblock to job creation in the last three years: Obamacare.

Not only has Obamacare failed to cut health care costs as promised, it has added to our national debt and plagued New Hampshire's small businesses with expensive mandates, making hiring especially difficult.

In such an inhospitable economic environment, small and large business alike are sitting on what available capital they have, worried about the job-killing policies Washington Democrats will craft next. That money should be spent hiring unemployed New Hampshire workers.

President Obama could learn a lesson or two from New Hampshire Republicans.

Just this year, our Republican Legislature passed more than 40 bills that eliminate the excessive regulations holding back New Hampshire's small businesses, and we helped claw back the outrageous spending habits of past Legislatures.

Showing a commitment to one of the founding principles of our nation, we voted to repeal 'card check' because people deserve a secret ballot and leaders who aren't afraid to stand up for workers' rights.

Unlike the president, our Republican Legislature has honored and restored the New Hampshire tradition of small, efficient government by eliminating wasteful and duplicative programs, resulting in an 11 percent reduction in our budget.

In Washington, Congressmen Frank Guinta and Charlie Bass have joined House Republicans in passing 22 bills that would directly spur job creation - bills to curb over-bearing regulations, ramp up energy production, support small businesses, keep taxes low and ease government mandates.

President Obama likes to talk about how Republicans won't work with him. But here's what he won't tell you: Each of those 22 bills received bipartisan support in the House. Meanwhile, the president's own 'jobs bill' received bipartisan opposition in the Senate.

So, why doesn't the Senate take up those 22 bills? Senate Democrats simply say no. President Obama says no. If there's no stimulus spending, they're hardly interested. And besides, if the president worked with Republicans, he'd find it much harder to run against them.

He has to run against them because the truth is he has no record to run on. Consider his latest accomplishment: pushing the national debt over $15 trillion. That certainly doesn't make for a good bumper sticker.

With debt like that, New Hampshire literally cannot afford another four years of President Obama. In 2008, voters took him at his word when he promised to cut the deficit. Three years later, he's created three record budget deficits exceeding $1 trillion each.

Back in 2010, President Obama told us, 'I didn't run just to keep my poll numbers as high as possible for the next election. I ran to solve problems for the next generation.'

As we head to Election Day 2012, though, it's undeniably clear: He's created more problems for the next generation than he's solved. So by his own standard, he doesn't deserve re-election.

In 2008, New Hampshire elected a president that was good at talking about jobs. In 2012, we'll elect one that actually knows how to create them.

(Wayne MacDonald is the chairman of the state Republican Party.)

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