Business groups urge Obama to push for immediate economic stimulus package
WASHINGTON (AP) -- Barack Obama rode a wave of economic discontent to the White House and now faces the daunting task of turning the weakening economy around.
Business groups wary of Obama's populist campaign rhetoric hope to make common cause with the Illinois senator and other congressional Democrats by pushing for an economic stimulus package, possibly as early as this year.
Groups such as the U.S. Chamber of Commerce hope to include corporate tax breaks in the stimulus, along with the spending on roads and bridges intended to create jobs that is likely to be the cornerstone of his plan.
"We start off with a shared and very strong and mutual interest," said Bruce Josten, chief lobbyist for the U.S. Chamber of Commerce. "The number one issue today is ... the economy."
Still, Obama has promised tougher government regulation for a range of industries, including financial services, energy and health care, and he is likely to be a strong ally for labor unions.
Wall Street "will be surprised by the speed and degree to which the corporatist agenda is replaced by 1970s-style economic populism," wrote Andrew Parmentier, an analyst at FBR Capital Markets, in a note to clients...