President Obama has sent a letter urging House and Senate leaders to quickly pass legislation that would establish a $30 billion fund to boost small-business lending and renewed calls for Congress to tax financial institutions for benefiting from the financial bailout.
The House is expected to take up the legislation with the small-business lending provisions this week, and the Senate is expected to follow suit after the House has completed it.
Obama said the legislation would help creditworthy firms access loans through community banks and innovative state partnerships.
"I believe that these targeted investments to help our nation's small businesses grow and create jobs will boost the economic recovery," he wrote. The letter was sent over the weekend to Speaker Nancy Pelosi, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, House Republican Leader John Boehner and Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell.
But the president also called on Congress to require banks that benefited from the Troubled Asset Relief Program to be forced to give back to Uncle Sam.