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Obama on Colorado: It's a 'state that represents the future'

9:14 PM, Nov 1, 2011   |    comments
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VIEW SLIDESHOW OF ADELE IN WASHINGTON

The first question she asked Obama was from a 9NEWS viewer, Amanda Olin, who wanted to know what he would do if he was a struggling American and couldn't find a job.

"This is obviously a question that a lot of folks are asking all across the country. And for the individual who's looking for a job, obviously the most important thing is to be persistent, remain hopeful, see if there are programs through a community college, or what have you, that can train for a job that you know is out there right now. And a lot of community colleges do a great job and you can go part time, and it's affordable," the president said. "But for the country as a whole, what we need to do is create more jobs, and that's why I put forward the American Jobs Act. This is a plan that incorporates Democratic and Republican ideas. Traditionally, it's gotten support from both parties, putting folks back to work rebuilding our roads and bridges, getting our teachers back in the classroom, 'cause there've been a lot of layoffs at the local level, providing tax breaks to small businesses to give them incentives to hire veterans and the long-term unemployed. So, we've got to keep pushing here in Washington for Congress to do its job in order to make sure that we have more jobs out there for folks who are struggling, looking for work."

Obama has visited Colorado twice in the past four weeks as he travels around the country gathering support for his economic policies. The latest visit came last Wednesday when a snow storm swept over the Front Range. Adele asked the president why Colorado was so important.

"First of all, I just love the state, although as I mentioned, I saw my first snow of the year when I was in Denver last. But it's also, I think, a state that represents the future. It thinks about not just where we've been, but where we need to go. Whether you're talking about alternative energy or high tech, advanced manufacturing," Obama said, "I think your governor, Governor [John] Hickenlooper, is doing a great job. You've got a couple of great senators in [Mark] Udall and [Michael] Bennet. And so, I've got a lot of friends there, I also think though that Colorado is representative of a 'can do' spirit that we need to recapture, and a willingness to put practical, common sense ahead of politics. And that's the kind of spirit we need a little more of here in Washington."

It should be noted that like the president, Hickenlooper, Udall and Bennet are Democrats.

Adele brought up the fact that many Americans feel frustrated by the "stalemate" in Washington, D.C. and want something to get done to fix the economy and create more jobs. President Obama agreed that many Americans are frustrated and mentioned the Jobs Act again.

"We're going to keep on pushing the Jobs Act in Congress. Where we can get Republicans in Congress to agree to do some things, like for example the trade deal that can help create jobs here in the United States, we're going to do that. But I'm not waiting for Congress, so this past week, you know, I announced in Denver a plan to help students manage their student loan debt more effectively and reduce their costs. We announced, a couple of days earlier, a plan that we're doing through Executive action to help families refinance their homes and take advantage of these very low interest rates that we have right now. So we're going to keep on looking for everything I can do without Congress to help families economically, help rebuild our middle class, strengthen the economy. But in the meantime, I want everybody to keep on putting pressure on Congress to, you know, put country ahead of party. Don't worry about the next election, worry about the next generation and how we're going to build an economy where the middle class and people who want to get into the middle class have a chance to succeed."

For her final question, Adele was able to ask the president what he thought of the Occupy Wall Street movement that has grown to cities across the country, including in Denver.

"Whether you look at the Occupy Wall Street movement, whether you look at the Tea Party, you know during times of economic stress, people have frustration, and when they don't see their leadership acting in ways that are in their interests, they're going to find other channels to express that frustration. The irony is that, the problems we have are completely solvable," Obama said. "You know, we can reduce our deficit in a balanced way that maintains our investment in education and science and our infrastructure and our national security by cutting things we don't need - but also making sure that those like myself, who've been incredibly fortunate, that we're paying our fair share of taxes. We can make sure that we put people back to work by the kinds of ideas that are reflected in the American Jobs Act. So, part of what's so frustrating, I think, for folks is, it's not as if we don't have good solutions to these problems. It's just that politics has come to dominate this town and, you know, part of what I promised when I came into office was that I was going to focus on the American people. That's what I've done and I need some partners around here, and we're going to keep on pushing them until they finally get the message."

(KUSA-TV © 2011 Multimedia Holdings Corporation)

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