- Associated Press - Thursday, October 13, 2011

House Speaker John A. Boehner and President Obama talked about jobs legislation Thursday in a 10-minute phone call, the Ohio Republican’s office said.

Mr. Boehner told Mr. Obama that Republicans are willing to address new transportation and infrastructure spending but “in a fiscally responsible way.”

The Boehner-Obama conversation took place as Senate Republicans introduced legislation aimed at creating jobs by overhauling the nation’s tax laws, cutting business rules and boosting offshore oil exploration.

The GOP bill is called the “Jobs Through Growth Act” and doesn’t include a single item in Mr. Obama’s jobs legislation, which Senate Republicans killed in a Tuesday night vote.

“They believe that government and spending creates jobs,” said Sen. John McCain, Arizona Republican. “We believe business and growth creates jobs.”

The Republican plan also calls for repealing Mr. Obama’s health-care law and passing a constitutional amendment requiring a balanced budget.

“This is a pro-growth proposal to create the environment for jobs,” said Sen. Rob Portman, Ohio Republican. “And that’s as opposed to the short-term, sweetener approach of the Obama administration that simply hasn’t worked.”

The Senate plan resembles a jobs package assembled by Mr. Portman earlier this year and a proposal that House Republicans released back in May.

The latest release came as Democrats are trying to mount an offensive on the jobs issue.

One idea that could win bipartisan support is a proposal to permit U.S. companies to bring home $1.4 trillion in overseas profits that are kept offshore because of high corporate tax rates. And lawmakers in both parties support revamping the tax code by getting rid of deductions and using the revenue to lower rates on individuals and businesses.

But most of the other elements of the plan, including repeal of last year’s financial overhaul measure and a complete moratorium on new regulations, are nonstarters with the White House and Democrats controlling the Senate.

Mr. Obama wants to spend money on public works, cut payroll taxes for individuals and businesses, and help local governments avoid laying off public workers.

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