president barack obama austin economy jobs
Evan Vucci/AP
By Mark Felsenthal

WASHINGTON -- President Barack Obama travels to Texas on Thursday to put his focus back on job creation and economic growth after giving intensive attention to gun control legislation and immigration reform.

The president is due to hold events around the country to draw attention to his efforts to boost economic growth through jobs that benefit the middle class, a White House official said.

The trip comes as a poll shows Americans say what they want most from politicians in Washington is job creation and helping the economy grow.

In a visit to the Austin, Texas, area, Obama is due to visit Applied Materials Inc. (AMAT) which makes semiconductors and other technology, and a high school focused on math and science. He will also meet local residents and entrepreneurs.

Obama's jobs tour follows some policy frustrations for him. The president failed to persuade Congress to accept expanded background checks for gun buyers, a disappointing setback to his efforts to toughen gun rules after the December murders of 20 children and six adults at an elementary school in Newtown, Conn.

He is also at an impasse with congressional Republicans over a deficit reduction deal that he insists should include higher tax revenues, which Republicans oppose.

The president does appear to be making headway in his efforts to change immigration laws to open a path to citizenship for a portion of the 11 million people who are in the United States without proper documentation. However, final legislation is months off.

In the meantime, a Gallup poll released Tuesday found 86 percent of those surveyed this month ranked creating more jobs as their top priority for action by Congress and the president, tied at 86 percent with helping the economy grow.

Lower on the priority list were reducing the federal deficit at 69 percent, reforming the tax code 59 percent, reducing gun violence 55 percent and reforming immigration 50 percent.

The U.S. economy is recovering slowly after the deep recession of 2007-2009. Despite some encouraging signs of economic resurgence, such as stock market record highs, the jobless rate, while falling, remains at an elevated 7.5 percent.

The president will announce a competition for locations to site three manufacturing institutes where businesses, government and educational institutions will get funding to develop new technologies, the White House official said.

He will also issue an executive order requiring that newly released government data be made freely available in easily readable formats.

The president's jobs tour is also likely be a chance for him to argue that across-the-board spending cuts referred to as sequestration that went into effect March 1 are slowing economic growth and should be replaced.

The spending reductions went into force after congressional Republicans balked at the president's insistence that any alternative spending cuts be offset by some tax increases. Some Republicans have welcomed the cuts as necessary austerity measures to check government overspending.

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I usedto believe that the American Citicenship was something for all Americans to be proud but sadly enough, we now have a president who spends most of his time paddling free American Citicenship to anyone guilty of violating the border regulations of our beautiful and generous country. Who of us voted for this?

May 09 2013 at 3:34 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

hope to hell he stays out of wwest texas

May 09 2013 at 3:05 PM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply

you too can be a community organizer

May 09 2013 at 2:47 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

We need a real leader, not a campaigner. Mr. President you are out of touch with reality.

May 09 2013 at 1:58 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

"His focus has been on Gun Control and Immigration Reform. "

.....and now that NOTHING has ben accomplished there, its time to turn his attention to jobs and the economy ? I thought he promised to be " focused like a laser beam" ( see 2012 Election Rhetoric) ?

May 09 2013 at 1:51 PM Report abuse +2 rate up rate down Reply

Recently bailed out Government Motors is building a new Cadillac plant there. Well Mr. president when are you going to look into bring those jobs to the USA ? Maybe you should eliminate the high corporate tax rate for starters, then maybe GM could prosper in this country. The sad part is you have the union keeping the cost of manufacturing high, therefore the price of the vehicles are going to keep rising. The Japanese and the Koreans are kicking out behinds in auto sales, because they don't have the high union salaries to pay out.
It's hard to focus on American jobs Mr. president, when you are flying all over the place still campaigning like it was 2008. I hope your golf score has improved after those expensive golf lessons you received from Tiger Woods. Enjoy the rest of your golf games for the next three years Mr. President, after all it's a hard job destroying the American economy, you must be exhausted.

May 09 2013 at 1:25 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
2 replies to janeswizzle's comment

Our* typo

May 09 2013 at 1:25 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

I hope you don't jinx this company, Mr. President, it seems that every other company you went to for a photo op, went belly up. Good luck Applied Materials Inc.

May 09 2013 at 1:38 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Obama visits the most liberal city in Texas because he knows that no one wants him here. He has nothing to say and the people in Texas know it.

May 09 2013 at 1:24 PM Report abuse +3 rate up rate down Reply

What is it, 6 years or so? NOW he is going to focus on jobs and the economy. I love this loser more and more everyday. Not!

May 09 2013 at 1:22 PM Report abuse +2 rate up rate down Reply

I find it a little hypocritical that Obama's job creator czar Jeffery Immelt, has helped create more jobs in China than here in the USA. Obama has no intentions of helping Americans get back to work. " I will not rest until every American has a job that needs a job." Best political promise ever given to jobless Americans, it's a real vote getter. It's too bad America fell for it.

May 09 2013 at 1:16 PM Report abuse +4 rate up rate down Reply

This president lost focus on jobs on 1-21-2009

May 09 2013 at 1:07 PM Report abuse +4 rate up rate down Reply