Posts Tagged ‘State of the Union’

Excerpts from Barack Obama’s State of the Union Address

“In the coming months, let’s see where else we can make progress together. Let’s make this a year of action. That’s what most Americans want – for all of us in this chamber to focus on their lives, their hopes, their aspirations. And what I believe unites the people of this nation, regardless of race or region or party, young or old, rich or poor, is the simple, profound belief in opportunity for all – the notion that if you work hard and take responsibility, you can get ahead.\

Newscast Media WASHINGTON—Tonight, the president will be delivering his State of
the Union Address. Below are some of the excerpts in advance, that have been
prepared for his delivery to the American people:

“Let’s face it: that belief has suffered some serious blows. Over more than
three decades, even before the Great Recession hit, massive shifts in
technology and global competition had eliminated a lot of good, middle-class
jobs, and weakened the economic foundations that families depend on.

Today, after four years of economic growth, corporate profits and stock prices
have rarely been higher, and those at the top have never done better. But
average wages have barely budged. Inequality has deepened. Upward mobility
has stalled. The cold, hard fact is that even in the midst of recovery, too many
Americans are working more than ever just to get by – let alone get ahead.
And too many still aren’t working at all.

Our job is to reverse these tides. It won’t happen right away, and we won’t
agree on everything. But what I offer tonight is a set of concrete, practical
proposals to speed up growth, strengthen the middle class, and build new
ladders of opportunity into the middle class. Some require Congressional action,
and I’m eager to work with all of you. But America does not stand still – and
neither will I. So wherever and whenever I can take steps without legislation to
expand opportunity for more American families, that’s what I’m going to do.”

“Opportunity is who we are. And the defining project of our generation is to
restore that promise.”


Be the first to comment - What do you think?  Posted by Joseph Earnest - January 29, 2014 at 12:45 am

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Barack Obama to raise minimum wage to $10.10 per hour using Executive Order

President Barack Obama before giving speech —Photo by Joseph Earnest

Newscast Media WASHINGTON—The President wants to work with Congress to pass
the Harkin-Miller bill that would increase the Federal minimum wage to $10.10 per
hour, and index it to inflation thereafter, and he will continue to work with Congress
to get that done. The President has also looked at what he can do through executive
action to help raise wages for hardworking Americans.

In the State of the Union Address, the President will announce that he will use his
executive authority to raise the minimum wage to $10.10 for those working on new
federal contracts for services.

Hardworking Americans – including janitors and construction workers –
working on new federal contracts will benefit from the Executive Order
(EO). This action will cover workers who are performing services or
construction and are getting paid less than $10.10 an hour. Some examples of
the hardworking people who would benefit from an EO include military base
workers who wash dishes, serve food and do laundry.

A higher minimum wage for federal contract workers will provide good
value for the federal government and hence good value for the taxpayer.
Boosting wages will lower turnover and increase morale, and will lead to higher
productivity overall. Raising wages for those at the bottom will improve the
quality and efficiency of services provided to the government. When Maryland
passed its living wage law for companies contracting with the state, there was
an increase in the number of contractors bidding and higher competition can
help ensure better quality.

The wage increase will be manageable for contractors. The increase will
take effect for new contracts after the effective date of the order, so
contractors will have time to prepare and price their bids accordingly.

It has been seven years since Congress last acted to increase the minimum wage
and, adjusted for inflation, today the real value of minimum wage is roughly the same
as what it was in the 1950s, despite the fact that the typical American family’s
income has doubled since then. And right now a full-time minimum wage worker makes
$14,500 a year, which leaves too many families struggling to make ends meet. Even
after accounting for programs like the Earned Income Tax Credit, a family of four
supported by a minimum wage worker still ends up living below the poverty line.

The President is using his executive authority to lead by example, and will continue to
work with Congress to finish the job for all Americans by passing the Harkin-Miller bill.
The bill would raise the Federal minimum wage for working Americans in stages to
$10.10 an hour and index it to inflation thereafter, while also raising the minimum
wage for tipped workers for the first time in over 20 years.


Be the first to comment - What do you think?  Posted by Joseph Earnest - January 28, 2014 at 7:38 pm

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TIME crowns Rubio savior -Rubio to Time: I’m not the savior

United States Senator Marco Rubio—Photo by Joseph Earnest

Newscast Media WASHINGTON, D.C.—After being featured on the cover of TIME magazine that dubbed him the “Savior” of the Republican Party, Senator Marco Rubio didn’t seem too amused with such an elevation and took to Twitter to declare who the true savior is.

“There is only one savior, and it’s not me. #Jesus”, Rubio tweeted.

Rubio's tweet

The magazine cover with the sub-title “How Marco Rubio became the new voice of the GOP” can be viewed here.

GOP leaders chose Rubio to deliver the official Republican response to Barack Obama’s State of the Union address next week, in both English and Spanish.

“I look forward to laying out the Republican case of how our ideas can help people close the gap between their dreams and the opportunities to realize them,” Rubio responded in a statement.

Speculation about a possible Rubio run in 2016 for president continues to grow, and other names being mentioned are Rand Paul, Paul Ryan and Jeb Bush. Within the GOP a consensus is developing that the Party needs to engage in more effective outreach to the Hispanic, African, and Asian American communities.

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Be the first to comment - What do you think?  Posted by Joseph Earnest - February 8, 2013 at 1:18 am

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