Obama pushes jobs plan as help for Hispanics

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WASHINGTON (AP) ? President Barack Obama is promoting his new, $447 billion jobs plan to Hispanic members of Congress. He says it will help Latino workers and businessmen by lowering their taxes, spending on public works projects and protecting teachers against layoffs.

The president made his pitch Wednesday during the Congressional Hispanic Caucus Institute’s 34th Annual Awards Gala. The event is part of Hispanic Heritage Month.

The White House says the jobs proposal would lower payroll taxes for about 25 million Hispanic workers and about 250,000 Hispanic-owned businesses. Moreover, the White House says the legislation could help the 344,000 Hispanics no longer working as carpenters or construction laborers because of the recession.

The president combined his courtship of Hispanic voters with what has become a vigorous public relations campaign for his jobs plan.