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Obama agenda: The jobs debate

"The White House is lukewarm about proposals by congressional Democrats to introduce broad legislation to create jobs, instead favoring targeted measures that would be less likely to inflate the deficit," the Wall Street Journal says. "There is as yet no agreement within the White House or in Congress on how to try to curb the U.S. jobless rate. But the differences in opinion suggest that rifts could emerge among Democrats as they wrestle with how to beat back the highest unemployment rate in a generation."

The president said his Asia trip was about American jobs. "As we emerge from the worst recession in generations, there is nothing more important than to do everything we can to get our economy moving again and put Americans back to work, and I will go anywhere to pursue that goal," Obama says in his weekly radio/Internet address, recorded in the South Korean capital of Seoul, his last stop. "That's one of the main reasons I took this trip. Asia is a region where we now buy more goods and do more trade with than any other place in the world -- commerce that supports millions of jobs back home."

Video: A Morning Meeting panel debates how President Obama should handle the growing unemployment problem.

The New York Times has a primer on the military options President Obama is weighing on Afghanistan.

Writing about the president's campaign to promote science and math education, which he announces later this morning, the New York Times says the White House is recruiting Big Bird, Elmo, and video-game programmers. "The campaign, called Educate to Innovate, will focus mainly on activities outside the classroom. For example, Discovery Communications has promised to use two hours of the afternoon schedule on its Science Channel cable network for commercial-free programming geared toward middle school students. Science and engineering societies are promising to provide volunteers to work with students in the classroom, culminating in a National Lab Day in May."

The AP previews tomorrow's state visit by India's prime minister. "India has watched with wariness as President Barack Obama's administration has lavished attention on rivals Pakistan and China. Now, Obama is trying to ease Indian worries by honoring Prime Minister Manmohan Singh with the first state visit of his presidency."

"A lawyer representing one of the 9/11 defendants said Sunday that the five defendants will plead not guilty to air their criticisms of U.S. foreign policy."