Here is a summary taken from the transcript of President Obama’s speech this afternoon. [Bracketed comments are paraphrased with slight bias]. Read the full transcript here
“Putting all your eggs in the basket of an oil pipeline that may only create about 50 permanent jobs… isn’t a jobs plan.” – President Obama
Today, our businesses have created 7.2 million new jobs over the last 40 months. This year, we’re off to our best private-sector job growth since 1999. We now sell more products made in America to the rest of the world than ever before. We produce more renewable energy than ever, and more natural gas than anyone. Health care costs are growing at the slowest rate in 50 years. And our deficits are falling at the fastest rate in 60 years.
What we need…
1) Jobs in American manufacturing. Let’s offer new tax incentives for manufacturers that bring jobs back to America, and new tax credits so communities hit hardest by plant closures can attract new investment.
2) Jobs rebuilding our infrastructure. Congress should pass my “Fix-It-First” plan to put people to work immediately on our most urgent repairs, like the 100,000 bridges that are old enough to qualify for Medicare. And we should partner with the private sector to upgrade what growing, 21st-century businesses like Amazon need most: modern air traffic control systems to keep planes running on time, modern power grids and pipelines to survive a storm, modern schools to prepare our kids for the jobs of tomorrow.
3) Keep creating good jobs in wind, solar, and natural gas. [we should cut investments / we should develop more]
4) Jobs exporting our goods around the world. [Takes credit for Bush-era free trade agreements, then encourages congress to approve more.] Two years ago, we created SelectUSA, a coordinated effort to attract foreign companies looking to invest and create jobs. Today I’m directing my Cabinet to expand these efforts, and this October, I’ll bring business leaders from around the world, and connect them with state and local leaders who are ready to prove there’s no better place to do business than right here in America.
5) Helping the more than four million long-term unemployed Americans. I’m challenging CEOs to do more to help these Americans get back on their feet, and this fall, I’ll bring together the CEOs and companies that are putting in place the best practices for recruiting, training, and hiring workers who’ve been seeking work for too long. [further calls on companies to voluntarily increase their benefits programs and increase worker training]
On Increasing the minimum wage… And because no one who works full-time in America should have to live in poverty, I will keep making the case that we need to raise a minimum wage that in real terms is lower than it was when Ronald Reagan took office.
[condemns House Republicans and the sequester]
On Taxes… I propose an idea and Republicans say no just because it’s my idea, let me try offering something that serious people in both parties should be able to support: a deal that simplifies the tax code for our businesses and creates good jobs with good wages for the middle-class folks who work at those businesses.
[mentions standard reduce rates / close loopholes corporate reform talking points]
I’m willing to work with Republicans on reforming our corporate tax code, as long as we use the money from transitioning to a simpler tax system for a significant investment in creating middle-class jobs.
On Keystone and GOP criticism… Putting all your eggs in the basket of an oil pipeline that may only create about 50 permanent jobs, and wasting the country’s time by taking something like 40 meaningless votes to repeal Obamacare isn’t a jobs plan.
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