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Obama agenda: 'We can't wait'

“With his jobs plan stymied in Congress by Republican opposition, President Obama on Monday will begin a series of executive-branch actions to confront housing, education and other economic problems over the coming months, heralded by a new mantra: ‘We can’t wait’ for lawmakers to act,” the New York Times says.

John Harwood writes that things don’t look bullish for tax reform. “Even in good times, tax reform poses steep political challenges. And these aren’t exactly good times,” he says. “That helps explain the angst among advocates of revamping the tax code as they have watched events erode their hopes of near-term success on Capitol Hill. The escalating tax debate among Republican presidential candidates ensures the issue won’t go away, but it also means any resolution will probably wait until after Election Day 2012.”

“Vice President Joe Biden yesterday doubled down on his claim that the president’s jobs bill would stop rapes and murders,” The New York Post writes. Biden told CNN, “That is a fact. If [cities] don’t get help, crime is going to continue to go up.”

But crime has actually gone down since the recession began. Some criminologists are even looking into what they call the “Obama Effect.”

But there’s also another Obama Effect, Politico writes, “In trips to Michigan, North Carolina, and Pennsylvania — all states that he carried in 2008 — members of Congress were notably missing from the president’s side. Though none came out and said they were deliberately avoiding him, they didn’t have to: Dodging a presidential candidate who’s riding low in the polls is a time-honored political practice.”