Facing resistance from within his own party on his nearly $800 billion economic recovery plan, President-elect Barack Obama pointed to alarming new unemployment figures to urge its passage in Congress.
Obama sought to patch fissures Friday with senior Democrats over key features of the still emerging plan, which he vowed to "hone and refine" with help from both Republican and Democratic lawmaker. The need for a plan grew more pressing with the release of a Labor Department report showing job losses of 524,000 in December and a 7.2 percent unemployment rate, the highest in 16 years.
Democratic congressional officials said that Obama aides came under pressure in closed-door talks to jettison or significantly alter a proposed tax credit for creating jobs.
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