- The Washington Times - Tuesday, April 21, 2015

The White House didn’t put up an argument Tuesday with Hillary Rodham Clinton’s claim that small-business creation has “stalled out” in the past two years under President Obama’s leadership.

“The president certainly believes that there is more that we can do here in Washington to put in place policies that will further strengthen job creation in our economy,” White House press secretary Josh Earnest said when asked to comment on Mrs. Clinton’s critique.

In New Hampshire on Monday, Mrs. Clinton, the presumptive front-runner for the Democratic presidential nomination in 2016, said she was “surprised” to learn that all the complaints she’s been hearing for the last two years about the difficulty in starting small businesses turned out to be true.

“I want to be sure that we get small businesses starting and growing in America again,” she said. “We have stalled out. I was very surprised to see that when I began to dig into it … it turns out that we are are not producing as many small businesses as we used to.”

It was the second time in two weeks that she has used the “stalled out” theme to describe the climate for small businesses.

Mr. Earnest said the blame lies largely with Congress.

“The president himself has said many times that there are additional important steps that could be taken by Washington, D.C. where members of Congress no longer serve as an impediment to forward economic momentum, but actually that they can support it,” he said.

Asked again if the president agrees with Mrs. Clinton that small-business creation has “stalled out,” Mr. Earnest told a reporter, “We’ll take a look at the statistics and get back to you.”

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