President Barack Obama is calling on the public to help him get a plan through Congress to expand government assistance to homeowners.

Obama urged people to "get on the phone, send an email, tweet," and visit with their lawmakers about his housing proposal to lower lending rates for millions of strapped homeowners.

Obama outlined the plan on Wednesday, asking Congress to make it easier for more borrowers to refinance their loans. Republicans say they want Obama's help to pass a payroll tax cut extension for a full year, expand energy production and repair and rebuild roads and bridges.

Pennsylvania Rep. Pat Meehan says the GOP energy and infrastructure agenda would create more than a million private-sector jobs by reducing regulation and red tape, without more spending.

(Copyright 2012 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)