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Obama agenda: Kicking off another bus tour

“President Barack Obama will call on Congress this week to send $35 billion to communities to rehire teachers, firefighters and police, in the first stage of his strategy to get some parts of his jobs plan enacted, White House spokesman Josh Earnest said yesterday,” Bloomberg writes. “ ‘It’s the president’s view that they should take up first the proposal that’s included in the American Jobs Act to help communities rehire teachers, police officers and firefighters,’ Earnest said on a conference call with reporters previewing the president’s bus trip to North Carolina and Virginia Oct. 17 to Oct. 19. ‘That’s where he believes the process should get started and he believes that process should start this week.”

The Asheville Citizen-Times: “Several thousand people turned out Sunday to get tickets to President Barack Obama’s speech on jobs today at Asheville Regional Airport. Many waited in line much of the day in the Gate 6 parking lot at the WNC Agricultural Center, some since early morning, for a chance at the free tickets. ‘It’s a once-in-a-lifetime chance to see the president in person,’ said Stacey Gardner, a 27-year-old student from Greenville, S.C. ‘I’m interested in the jobs plan, but mostly I’m interested in seeing him.’”

“When Lucille Richmond cast her ballot for Barack Obama three years ago, she, like many African-Americans, embraced the historic opportunity to help elect the nation’s first black president,” the Boston Globe writes. “But waiting in line at the county employment security commission last week, the 52-year-old grandmother — who lost two food preparation jobs and is searching for full-time work — can’t muster the will to support Obama for a second term. ‘I don’t see what he’s done,’ said Richmond, a Democrat. ‘I’m not even going to waste my time and vote.’ The president will visit North Carolina today in an attempt to stem such sentiments as he promotes his jobs bill. Obama’s most ardent supporters in Durham’s black community worry that waning enthusiasm among African-Americans may prevent him from repeating his razor-thin North Carolina victory of 2008.”

NPR strikes a similar chord: “This is not a state where a strong union presence can mobilize potential supporters. So he'll have to rely all the more heavily on the young voters and African-Americans who tipped the scales for him in 2008.

The New York Times: “The presence of Mr. Obama seemed to energize the crowd, with a loud ovation and shouts of ‘Four more years!’ and ‘That’s the man!’ as he took the stage. But his speech drew tepid applause from some in the audience who said they felt he was too restrained. ‘He has the ability to put it where the goats can get it, but instead he keeps it all in a little box,’ Ms. Harris said, a reference to Mr. Obama’s oratory skills. She added: ‘We like him. We just wish he would fight harder.’”

The Washington Post highlights the dilemma the White House faces over the Keystone XL pipeline. “The Keystone permit decision has landed literally and figuratively on the White House’s doorstep. Several key union allies and the Canadian government are pitted against environmental and youth activists who are threatening to turn Keystone into a campaign issue for President Obama.”

John Harwood writes how White House Bill Daley has struggled to please both Wall Street and the left.