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tv   Key Capitol Hill Hearings  CSPAN  January 13, 2016 4:00am-6:01am EST

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all of the attention. and most of all, democracy breaks down when the average person feels their voice doesn't matter. that the system is rigged in favor of the rich or the powerful or some special interest. too many americans feel that way right now. it's one of the few regrets of my presidency -- that the rancor and suspicion between the parties has gotten worse instead of better. i have no doubt a president with the gifts of lincoln or roosevelt might have better bridged the divide, and i guarantee i'll keep trying to be better so long as i hold this office. but, my fellow americans, this cannot be my task -- or any president's -- alone. there are a whole lot of folks in this chamber, and good
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people, who would like to see more cooperation, a more elevated debate in washington, but feel trapped by the demands of gettingives elected. by the noise coming out of your bass. -- you have told me. means if we want a better politics, and i am addressing the american people now, it is not enough to just change a congressman or a senator or even a president; we have to change the system to reflect our better selves. i think we have got to end the practice of drawing our congressional districts so that politicians can pick their
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voters, and not the other way around. [applause]] i believe we have to reduce the influence of money in our politics, so that a handful of families and hidden interests can't bankroll our elections -- and if our existing approach to campaign finance reform can't pass muster in the courts, we need to work together to find a real solution. because it is a problem. likemost of you do not raising money. i know. i have done it. easier tot to make it vote, not harder. we need to modernize it for the way we live now. [applause]
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pres. obama: this is america. we want to to make it easier for people to participate. and, over the course of this year, i intend to travel the country to push for reforms that do. but i can't do these things on my own. [applause] changes in our political process -- in not just who gets elected but how they get elected -- that will only happen when the american people demand it. it depends upon you. that's what's meant by a government of, by, and for the people. what i am suggesting is hard.
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easier to beo cynical. to accept that change isn't possible, and politics is hopeless, and to believe that our voices and actions don't matter. but if we give up now, then we forsake a better future. those with money and power will gain greater control over the decisions that could send a young soldier to war, or allow another economic disaster, or roll back the equal rights and voting rights that generations of americans have fought, even died, to secure. and then, as frustration grows, there will be voices urging us to fall back into our respective
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tribes, to scapegoat fellow citizens who do not look like us, or pray like us, or vote like we do, or share the same background. we can't afford to go down that path. it won't deliver the economy we want, it will not produce the security we want, but most of all, it contradicts everything that makes us the envy of the world. so, my fellow americans, whatever you may believe, whether you prefer one party or no party, our collective future depends on your willingness to uphold your obligations as a citizen. to vote. to speak out. to stand up for others, especially the weak, especially the vulnerable, knowing that
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each of us is only here because somebody, somewhere, stood up for us. [applause] obama: we need it every american to stay active in our public life so it reflects the goodness and decency and optimism that i see in the american people every single day. it is not easy. our brand of democracy is hard. but i can promise that to a little over a year from now, when i no longer hold this office, i will be right there with you as a citizen, inspired
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by those voices of fairness and good humorgreat and and kindness that have helped america traveled so far. that helped as see ourselves not first and foremost of black or white or asian or latino, not as gay or straight, immigrant or native born; not as democrats or republicans, but as americans first, bound by a common creed. voices dr. king believed would have the final word -- voices of unarmed truth and unconditional love. and they are out there, those voices. they don't get a lot of attention, nor do they seek it, they do not seek fanfare. but they are busy doing the work this country needs doing. i see them everywhere i travel
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in this incredible country of ours. i see you. the american people. daily acts of citizenship, i see our future unfolding. i see it in the worker on the assembly line who clocked extra shifts to keep his company open, and the boss who pays him higher wages instead of letting him off. i see it in the dreamer who stays up late to finish her science project, and the teacher who comes in early, maybe because with some extra supplies she bought a can she knows that young girl might someday cure disease. i see it in the american who served his time, and dreams of starting over -- and the business owner who gives him that second chance.
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the protester determined to prove that justice matters, and the young cop walking the beat, treating everybody with respect, doing the brave, quiet work of keeping us safe. [applause] obama: i see it in the soldier who gives almost everything to save his brothers, the nurse who tends to him 'til he can run a marathon, and the community that lines up to cheer him on. it's the son who finds the courage to come out as who he is, and the father whose love for that son overrides everything he's been taught. [applause] obama: i see it in the elderly woman who will wait in line to cast her vote as long as she has to; the new citizen who casts
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his for the first time; the volunteers at the polls who believe every vote should count, because each of them in different ways know how much that precious right is worth. that's the america i know. that's the country we love. clear-eyed. big-hearted. undaunted by challenge. optimistic that unarmed truth and unconditional love will have the final word. [applause]] pres. obama: that's what makes me so hopeful about our future. because of you. the american people. i believe in you. and that is why i stand here that the state of our union is strong. thank you, god bless you, and god bless the united states of
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america. [applause] [applause]
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[indiscernible conversation]
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>> it has been an honor. pres. obama: thank you. i have been reading about it. i will have to find out more about his. [indiscernible conversation] pres. obama: what's going on, rather? happy new year. [laughter]
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[indiscernible conversation] >> thank you. great to be here. [indiscernible conversation] >> it does when you should probably send in. it worked. let's see. pres. obama: i can personalize it. >> we're working on it. appreciate it. appreciate it. thank you.
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>> appreciate you. >> see you in palm springs. pres. obama: hey, there you go. >> thank you. say hello to michelle. >> i look forward to it. >> thank you. thank you. >> it is really an honor. pres. obama: you definitely would have been. [laughter] >> we did. we did. pres. obama: appreciate it. what's going on, brother. good job happy new year, everybody.
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ng on it. i have been. i am really familiar. [laughter] conversation]. obama: i am not a picture-taker. it is a picture regiment. >> thank you. obama: don't fall. i will catch you. [indiscernible conversation]
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pres. obama: this is one of my favorites, right here. i know. >> i can't go without you. hello. how are you? go to zero, whether. how have you been. pres. obama: you told me, he is a real player. there he is. what's going on, chief? hello. conversation] pres. obama: how have you been?
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>> at brooklyn still loves you and they hope you'll come back when you are a citizen again. pres. obama: hey, i like the beard. it is as great as my hair. [laughter] >> eight more years. more years: eight for you! i will vote for you. >> thank you. >> great job. pres. obama: what is your name? thing onek at this more time. that is kind of cool. hey, guys. how are you doing? can you guys doing good? good to see you.
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thank you guys. conversation] >> the question is now the motion to adjourn. to.motion is agreed accordingly, the house stands adjourned until 9:00 a.m. tomorrow. carolina: south governor nikki haley delivered the republican response to the president's state of the union response. this is 10 minutes. that evening. i am nikki haley, governor of the great state of south
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carolina. i am speaking from columbia. has a rich and complicated history. one that proves each day can be better than the last. i am going to talk about the vision of a brighter american future. but first, i want to say a few words about president obama who just gave his last state of the union address. seven years ago, he broke historic barriers and inspired millions of americans. fore did when he first ran office, tonight he spoke eloquently when he spoke about brand things. he is at his best when he does this. unfortunately, the president's record has often fallen short of his words. as he enters his final year in office, any americans are still feeling the squeeze of an economy too weak to raise income levels. we are feeling a crushing
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national debt. a health care plan that has made insurance less affordable and doctors less available. and, chaotic unrest in many of our cities. even worse, we are facing the threatngerous terrorist our country has seen since september 11. this president appears unwilling or unable to deal with it. soon the obama presidency will end. and, america will have it chance to turn in a new direction. that direction is what i want to talk about tonight. at the outset i will say this. you have paid attention to what is been happening in washington and you are not naive, neither am i. i see what you see. many of your frustrations are mine as well. a frustration with a government that has grown day after day year after year yet doesn't serve us any better. a frustration with the same endless conversations we hear over and over again.
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a frustration with promises made and never kept. we need to be honest with each other and ourselves. while democrats in washington bear much responsibility for the problems, they do not bear all of it alone. there is more the and enough blame to go around. we as republicans need to own that truth. we need to recognize our contributions to the erosion of the public trust in america's leadership. we need to accept we have played a role in how and why our government has broken. and then we need to fix it. the foundation that has made america the last best hope of earth hasn't gone anywhere. it still exists. it is up to us to return to it. for me, that starts right where it always has. i'm a proud daughter of indian immigrants. they reminded us every day how blessed we were to live in this country.
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growing up in the rural south, my family didn't look like our neighbors and we didn't have much. there were times that were tough. but we had each other. and we had the opportunity to do anything, as long as we were willing to work for it. my story is not that different from millions of other americans. immigrants have been coming to our shores for generations to dream the dream that is america. they want it better for their children than they had for themselves. that remains the dream of all of us. in this country we have seen time and again that that dream is achievable. today we live in a time of threats like few others in recent memory. during anxious times it can be tempting to follow the siren call of the angriest voices. we must resist that temptation.
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no one who is willing to work hard, abide by our laws, and live by our traditions should ever feel unwelcome in this country. at the same time, that does not mean we just flat out open our borders. we can't do that. we cannot permit immigrants to come here illegally. and in this age of terrorism, we must not let in refugees whose intentions cannot be determined. we must fix our broken immigration system. that means stopping illegal immigration and it means welcoming properly vetted immigrants regardless of their race or religion. just like we have for centuries. i have no doubt that if we act with proper focus, we can't protect our borders, our sovereignty, and our citizens all while remaining true to america's noblest legacies. this past summer south carolina
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was dealt a tragic blow. on an otherwise ordinary wednesday evening at the historic mother emanuel church in charleston, 12 faithful men , wentmen, young and old to bible study. that night someone new joined them. he did not act like them, look like them, or sound like them. they didn't throw him out. they didn't call the police. instead, they pulled up a chair and prayed with him for an hour. we lost nine incredible souls that night. what happened after the tragedy is worth pausing to think about. our state was struck with shock and pain and fear. but our people would not allow hate to win. we didn't have violence. we had the journals. -- we had vigils.
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we didn't have riots. we had hugs. we turned toward god. and to the values that have long made our country the freest and greatest in the world. we removed a symbol that was being used to divide us. thatwe found a strength united dust against a domestic terrorist and the hate that was inside of him. there is a lesson in this. in many parts of society today. there is a tendency to falsely equate noise with results. some people think that you have to be the loudest voice in the room to make a difference. that is just not true. often the best thing we can do is turn down the volume. when the sound is quieter we can hear what some of the else is saying. and that can make a world of difference. of course, that does not mean we won't have strong disagreements.
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we will. and, as we usher in this new era, republicans will stand up for our beliefs. if we held the white house, taxes would be lower. and we would put the brakes on runaway spending and debt, we would encourage american innovation and success. so our economy would truly soar and good jobs would be available across our country. we would reform education so it works best not for washington bureaucrats and union bosses. we would end a disastrous health care program and replace it with forms that lower cost and actually let you keep your doctor. we would respect differences in modern families. but we would also inspect -- insist on respect. we would recognize the importance of the separation of powers and honor the constitution in its entirety.
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and yes that includes the second , and 10th amendments. we would make international agreements that are celebrated in israel and protested in iran not the other way around. and rather than just thanking our brave men and women in in uniform, we would actually strengthen our military. so both our friends and our enemies would know that america seeks peace. that when we fight wars, we win them. we have big decisions to make. tested, butis being we have been tested in the past and our people of always risen to the challenge. we have all of the guidance we need to be safe and successful. our forefathers paid the way for this. let us take our values and our strength and do whatever it is we need to and a calla
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call for a better washington dc and a better political process. the irony was that he has kind of led the charge not allowing that change to happen in washington. it is kind of interesting town. >> when he talked about the economy and the fact that manufactured jobs are up, the automobile industry is up to me you are up in michigan. >> is true. is it because of government and what they have done or despite what government is done or combination of those things. trying to have his cake and eat it too, people don't feel it in their wallet leather pocketbook and a lot of that is a monitor policy. i share the monitor policy. i watch with the fed does closely, and in many ways we have created this wage
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inequality that the president was talking about. liquidity is there for big companies and government, not for small business people or you or i have citizens. that has been a problem. >> what is the economy like in grand rapids? >> it is doing very well. the office furniture is doing well, tourism is up. we have a healthy agriculture and they good strong automotive industry. my family is in construction. they are doing well but everyone feels a little tentative. hopefully we can solidify that. >> we appreciate your time and will let you go talk to the local folks. >> we are in statuary hall, the old house chamber, 18071857. the chamber was used in the
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states are each love to put two statutes in statuary hall but it has gotten so crowded that they have had to extend statuary hall now included in the rotunda as well. this is your 1st date of the union. >> what he said you like? >> well, the end was pleasant. democracy requires kindness and unconditional love. the prior strands did not include those. there are plenty of barbs across the board. i found the whole piece very contradictory on that. and so if he wants to reach across -- i have been here a year. come on over and play goose and socialize want to start building bonds. and i have been here one. he has been here seven.
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and so on the economic front look at the data. the proof is in the pudding. it's not looking too good. 19 trillion in debt. you have to be saying no. and so the seams will pop. they pop on the debt or 19 trillion from saying yes to everything which goes to the next generation. it is easy to talk ethics, that is unethical to throw that on the next generation and then all of our programs are insolvent by 2034. we have a hundred trillion in unfunded liability that we cannot afford. if we don't reform soon the next generation will get them. i wish you would tackle the biggest problems.
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paul ryan will start tackling them big time command we will try to get those numbers moving in the right direction command we could use the pres.'s help, but he did not address the biggest numbers and problem we had tonight. >> one of his lies was that food stamp recipients did not cause the recession, big corporations and banks constant. >> and that is what i'm getting at. that is a silly line that is a partisan barb.a partisan barb. no one thinks food stamps caused the financial crisis. everyone knows fannie and freddie were issued part of it. the job of bankers when you used to have free market is to assess risk. bankers no longer had to assess risk. they do the mortgage get their feet, make a little bit of money and put all the risk over on fannie and freddie. and that just goes to make sure that the shadow banking problems.
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the underlying huge problem was 1st in the real estate market and then it spread over in the financial market. without fannie and freddie when you lose track of free market and have big government running everything and if you notice on everything the government should help entrepreneurs be entrepreneurs. it is almost a contradiction in terms. the idea that the government is going to help the entrepreneurs be entrepreneurs comeau we are going to be like every nation in the history of nations that have failed and go in the wrong direction. >> that was the same message that help to knock off the majority leader of the primary. what is the pressure like within your caucus to go along get along support the party? >> you here this.
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when into cooperating unify learn how to govern. but i have a few issues. if you listen to the american people, the top three issues for the electric right now our foreign policy, terrorism, national security and the economy. and so the key to what is going on in the country, the american people are full of anxiety. instead of relieving the anxiety the president goes off and does executive actions like unconstitutional amnesty, epa overreach, gun overreach , and he has the psychology upside down. he increases the anxiety and gun sales go through the roof. the proof is in the pudding. he needs to help us solve
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some of that anxiety by getting serious about our strategy with respect to china and the linkagein the lancaster russia and iran. will he ran being alone hegemon or not? and all of our allies want to no that. the saudi's, egypt, jordan, our traditional allies want to know the answer. we have a completely wide-open southern border. according to the "washington post" we have 1000 opena thousand open terror cases across the 50 states and the homeland according to our fbi director call me, and we have a refugee problem. so i went to seminary. we all want to show compassion to folks around the world. we can and should. the experts in the field have said they can treat 60 people, the refugees, we can help 60 people in jordan and syria for the cost of bringing one person here. and so if you want to be compassionate and moral and
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care for people in the united states is spending four and a half billion on the syrian refugee problem, so it is not like we are a bunch of taiwan's. and the rest of the world needs life-saving drugs where do you come? to the us because our free market system alone is unique in the sense that it has created. i want to here the president brag about the free market system, rule of law which includes a solid border and property rights that have made is the greatest country in the world. if the left would have pushed that vision 20 years ago the rich countries to found the poor countries would notnow be rich and we would not have these problems. we know the building block and i hope the president will push free market. education, but will the far
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left teach that the only pathway for success for those kids is to get a job. that is the only success path, and it business is the bad guy it is a cynical tale for those young kids. i want to give them some real news. they can and better be morally good of this country is in trouble. i wish you would've been optimistic. we appreciate your time. eddie bernice johnson not only a congresswoman but are in. she hasshe has been present for all seven of president obama state of the union speeches. i got the completely wrong. give us your assessment.
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>> took the time to review the experiences he had. he also took the time to challenges. and what he pledges to do. and that is the part i got my attention. taking away rights of people and not giving them a free right to vote, that brought me to a very emotional. because this is america. we have achieved so much and yet we are back almost really started before. we have got to listen to that and take on our responsibility to make sure
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that every citizen who has the right to vote vote and can help to choose the people that represent them rather than those people drawing people out. that is the only way. and that is got most of my attention. >> the present also took some of the blame for the partisan rancor. >> all of us have somewhere to -- someone to blame. i wish i knew how to do a better job. trying to overcome it. nonetheless experts on how we overcome the attitudes that are already in place and not willing to open up to listen anyone else. in the present took on the responsibility.
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i just wish how much more i could do. but i do think that we owe it to this country to do a better job. >> as alwa pleasure to see you. we appreciate your time. from texas we will go out to the coast to california. judy chu represents. tell us about your district. >> what caught your ear? >> i thought that he was magnificent. he was able to remind us of what we need to do is able to reassure us with regard to the security issues of this world and isil, the fact that we are so active
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to combat the threat of terrorism and challenges us to come together and work together. what i most appreciated was the fact that he emphasized the value of diversity. if someone had a muslim american, i feel it's so important when people may be fearful that we don't target anyone group. >> it was a guest? >> an outstanding pakistani american businessman. >> your district is close. what did you hear from your constituents? >> there was a lot of fear he could not imagine that such a thing would happen. they were celebrating a
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holiday party. it was more shocking than one could ever imagine because it was so completely unusual and offended our sense of security. more important for us to try to have healing process and to make sure that that, appreciate everybody in our committee including muslim americans. well, soon to be the senior senator from the great state of maryland, senator ben carson spent many years in the senate and house of representatives. what can you take on the president's message? >> the president was pretty clear on the state of the union. proud of the record over the last seven years and he spelled out why in regard to economic growth, job growth,
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higher energy security. we have been able to do in reducing the deficit comeau we have been able to do in improving the lives of people of our country, affordability of health care. but he also talked about the future. what we appreciated there are things we can get done. make college more affordable , do things to help technology and advance the science, curing cancer. it was huge bipartisan reaction. we can make our system stronger. it does not mean we will always agree. allowing democratic process. >> eleven senators, democratic senators, democratic members of the house of representatives and several governors including state of maryland.
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what is your assessment? >> that the democratic process. politics is a dangerous profession. you never know how voters will feel. obviously there is momentum at election time which is part of the political process. but the elections are not until november. opportunity now to get things done. can we change that? people in the state have great jobs. we just expand clean energy opportunities. struggling to pay their bills, do more so that they don't have to live on the edges. areas in which democrats and republicans worked together. >> faith and harry reid and mitch mcconnell to accomplish that? >> i have faith in america.
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the president inspired. the strongest country in the world. >> senator barbara mikulski is resigning a retiring from congress. thank you. and then killing his uncle you are here representing the flint area. what is the current situation? >> it is tough. >> up to 10,000 children have been poisoned with lead three -- use untreated flint river water. finally tonight i see he called in the national guard nothing short of pathetic. and i've asked for federal help, spoke to the present briefly, spoke to the chief
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of staff. we just need to get these kids help. >> is he aware of the issue? >> he is. the president did indicate he has been staying up with the situation. i am hopeful they will be able to provide us help. >> what did you think of the presence last state of the union? >> i thought it was a good speech. there is no excuse using the politics of today to avoid actually governing. we should not let 2016 be a lost year. do with the american people are asking. as questions about political reformer particularly important and his call for us to not judge people based upon heritage or religion are important. one of my constituents is a young man who is just now in a ran: of the americans
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continuing to be held. i was disappointed the whole house of representatives did not stand in unison in the plot. cannot quite figure that out. >> what is the car industry like? >> a lot smaller than it was but it is back. does not have the presence that it once had but had about 10,000 general motors jobs. an important part of our local economy and i'm grateful for that. >> you both represent manufacturing districts. do you have anything in common? >> i do. ii have a different philosophy when it comes to economics, but we are both great lakes and other community representatives. from time to time we find things in common. >> democrat michigan.
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and we want to introduce you to brenda lawrence. >> i have heard all right. many before. >> what is your impression? >> i am a freshman member of congress. this was a different address comeau one with the president spoke to the american people. he really put out a call to the staunch process of democracy. i was moved that when we fail to compromise democracy grinds to a halt. so i spoke to that sense of democracy for all of us.
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and he spoke beyond his presidency which was something most presidents don't do. the performance. i found it compelling. he had on some things. we are a great nation. with so many people taking pleasure it is right and thoughtful to bring us back in. >> a citya city that has had to look at issues in a different way because of disasters. is the united states and the position, should it be to look at issues and the approach things in a different way?
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>> we are coming back. one of the things the president did not do was take a victory lap. our auto industry which is rebound. leasing bridge loans. they stand here in appreciation and give thanks this country everyone was leaving in droves. and is being repeated all over the country.
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>> our education system is challenged. every child would get an education. it is not what america is made about. we have some challenges in detroit and we must take care of it. there are different ways. >> brenda lawrence freshman member of congress to detroit southfield area. thank you for your time. and our coverage continues. we are in statuary hall. five presidents have been inaugurated.
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it was use of until 1857. it was in 1864 during the civil war. not a state in the united states. >> give us the long-term perspective. do they matter? >> they do. what is going on. going down the last series.
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got a at the mall. but things to agree and disagree with tonight. >> energy and climate change. energy but wind and solar. where we drill the wells begin to flood the market. now we are exporting oil. they are going to create a whole new energy economy. >> governor martinez. talked about is the potential vice presidential pick. >> obviously that's a big state.
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from new mexico will move over the houston texas. remind us that we have made great progress. if the budget nearly my three fourths.fourths. millions more have health care that did not have a before. the industry has had his best year ever. i thought it was important to remind us that some of the doom and gloom is little bit exaggerated. america is filled. we say that but we don't always say it's us that we communicate that.
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>> as someone who represents an energy city, what is the current oil situation done to the economy in the future? >> consumers, as you know, are very pleased because they are now having more money in their pockets and they get to use their cash to do some other things. on the other hand, we do have layoffs and you are right. epicenter,not the but is close to the epicenter of being the oil capital of the world. as such, we have to be concerned about drilling, continuing to have product to come online. we want to make sure we do not have a lot of companies to layoff to the extent it makes it difficult for them to get back to their optimum capacity. i think there are concerns that have to be dealt with, but i do believe these things are cyclical. we will come back through this and we will do quite well.
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while we are oil-centered in houston, we still have the greatest medical center in the world and it is doing very well. we have the space center for the world in houston. it is not completely diversified to the extent that i would wanted to be, but thank god it is not where it was. >> has president obama ever visited houston? >> oh yes. i was proud to be there with him when he came. day, there, it was a rainy and when i saw air force one land i literally had tears in my eyes. it is an awesome thing to see air force one with the president on board. i am proud of this president, not only what he has done for houston, which is a lot, but what he has done for this country. if you are muslim, this president made it very clear, conspicuously so that we should
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not target people, that you have a place in this country, that america is a place you can call home if you choose to make america your home. >> sheila jackson lee is in line and also represent used in. which one of you represents president and mrs. bush, george and barbara bush on the west side? >> i do not think either of us. i think it is just out of my district because i am south, and she goes more north and a little bit more to the east. she will be sure to tell you hert if they are in district. i have a great deal of respect for bush 41. when i was first elected, he asked that i come and visit with him and gave me some of the best advice i have received. his advice was, everyone will have an agenda for you.
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the challenge is to develop an agenda for yourself. i will always remember him for that. >> al green, democratic congressman from houston. thank you. you are watching c-span two live coverage from statute -- statuary hall. we will continue with our old friend sheila jackson lee. congresswoman, you have sat through a lot of the speeches. what do you think? ow. i just want to simply say wow. i think the president was ready to go. he does not in any way look like this is his last term. with thee is enthused greatness of this nation, and laid out those kind of principles for us. he was emboldened, powerful, and strong. i love the one about not talking about fear -- talking about fear
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do not overcome us in the future. do, is what america has to because there are milley elements we could be can -- many concernede could be about, an economy that is not as strong as it should be because people are feeling the impact of unemployment, despite the fact we have had 70 weeks consecutively of job creation. some people are not as successful, but what i think the president has said, we have so many variables in this nation, the democratic system, the respect of the world, a military that cannot compare to any, and frankly we have the future in front of us. >> congresswoman, since the president has been in office, the democrats have lost 69 seats in the house of representatives, 11 democratic senatorial seats. does that say something about his political leadership? >> i think anytime we take
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advance progressive and unique legislation,d pass one of those times of course with the passage of the affordable care act. not one single republican voted for it, however millions of americans have been able to secure health care through the affordable care act. and of course, we have been and the by terrorism misinterpretation of the president's and involvement or not involvement with securing this nation, so we have lost some seeds that we believe we are on the rise. we do believe the american have been made better, with more access to education. the treatment of veterans, the g.i. bill that was passed for iraq and afghanistan veterans came on the president's watch. we have been at peace, and have
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not had a heinous, horrific terrorist attack on our soil, but these things do happen. and we took the house back under president bush. that is the nature of politics. i think the president's heart is strong, and the message he gave us, we need to change our construct and lead the nation. that is a powerful gift. congresswoman, you usually have a guest at the state of the union. did you bring anyone? >> i did. i have been married to this gentleman nearing 45 years, and he is standing right behind me. he has not been to the state in -- my husband, dr. lee. the president is a big believer in pre-k and giving educational
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opportunity, i thought that he would benefit. the is going to go back and take the message the president has given, and work with his community to boost up education. seeir, i am sure you get to your wife every day, because every day she is on the house floor talking about an issue or two that is important to her, so it is a pleasure to meet you. we have never met your husband either. it is a birthday today. everything is happening. my best to the american people, and by commitment to do what is best for the american people. >> a pleasure to have you with us as well. >> glad to meet you. >> great to be with you again. liveis is c-span2's coverage from statuary hall, getting reactions for members of congress after the president's
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speech. congressman rob wittman is a republican from virginia. area, down there near virginia beach, kind of a military area. >> yes. >> when the president talked about the military, and the u.s. not needing to be the world's policeman, what was your thought? >> there certainly are threats around the world. i think we do need to exert ourselves in certain areas of the world to make sure we counter aggressive actions, like countries like russia and china, counter those rogue nations like iran. we saw them taking our 10 sailors on the high seas today and i think that is what is counter to what should be happening with a nation once you enter into a nuclear agreement. a good idea would not to be to take -- would be to not take our sailors and soldiers captive.
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i am in agreement that our men and women who serve in the military are indeed the best and brightest, and we do need to assert ourselves around the world. we do not need to be the world's policeman, but we cannot back away from situations where other nations are pushing and aggressive behavior, i believe, bags our presence. -- begs our presence. there has to be a strong military capability the u.s. has to counter that, so it is not just about supporting our men and women in uniform and words, but doing so in actions to make sure we properly fund the elements of readiness. make sure they had what they need so when we ask them to go into harm's way, they are fully capable, and we do not put them at an unnecessary risk. that is my deepest concern, that we ensure our military
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readiness. sequester is looming again next year. sequester coming back again would take away from our ability to do the things necessary for our military to make sure we have that presence around the world. >> you are supportive of an aumf ? >> i am supportive of us having a debate on what to do to defeat isis. interrelated. we have to have a firm, definite strategy of what we will do to defeat isis, and that has to be heart of the debate. i am in full agreement that we must debate and have an up or down vote on the authorization of the use of military force. >> congressman whitman, republican from virginia. we continue talking with members of congress, jeff fortenberry, a republican from nebraska.
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throughout the speech, you were tweeting. >> i was. i feel a little bit guilty about that because i was trying to, of course pay attention, but i have been encouraged to do this because constituents seem to like it. people are interacting so picking up the highlight is something i wanted to try to do. >> what was your essential message during the speech? >> i was just trying to unpack basic parts of the speech. i thought the speech was reasonably constructed around for key themes, economic and national security, the proper use of tech knowledge he, and appealing for new type of politics. there were some contradictions. the president said, i am not going to give you a list of things i would like to see done, and then does. there was a certain irony. the president was directly in my line of sight, and i saw the
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little sisters of the poor who are in the gallery, who are having to sue the president for their own health care freedom. i thought the lines about attacking poverty are a good way to rally all of us around what we must do, and the fact that americans, many americans feel left out of the system, that is stacked against them. that is true. the president took some blame for the political rancor, as he put it. do the republicans deserve some blame as well -- >> do the republicans deserve some blame as well? >> of course. it seems like the president does not like that kind of politics, but exercises those options himself, and has not worked aggressively to build relationship with congress. that is also a democrat complaint, and it makes it harder for any kind of agenda to
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get through. if he was asking me personally what he should do, i would say, you have got to reach out and be more personal with members. we have all been elected, we have all been through it, and i think that would be helpful to find constructive solutions. >> your state borders iowa. during this campaign season, is there any benefit to omaha being around desk across the river? -- across the river? >> the president is coming tomorrow. he will be in omaha, but given the spillover effects particularly of the media into western iowa, yes, it is a good dynamic for us. >> jeff fortenberry. this is c-span's coverage from statuary hall, and now joining us stomping into place is the minority whip, the democratic whip for the house of representatives, stanley hoyer.
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let's start with politics. the president took some blame for the political rancor of the last seven years. >> i wouldn't characterize it as taking blame. >> responsibility. >> he took some responsibility. what he also reflected was regret, that what he said he wanted to do he could not do. he could not bring people together. there was still too much rancor and division. clearly he articulated regret , my own view is, i do not know that he is the one responsible. i think frankly from the beginning, republicans decided they would not cooperate with this president. as you recall, senator mcconnell famously said when asked about your objective over the next four years, was to beat president obama. that is really what has happened.
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for instance, as he pointed out, and the last two or three months we had some accomplishments worked in a bipartisan fashion, most of that enabled by john boehner's stepping aside and setting the table for some bipartisan positive work that we did on the budget, on education, on other matters, getting an omnibus done. we would hope that we could do that, what i do not think the president took the blame because i do not think frankly he is at fault. i have been through five presidents. i think he reached out at the beginning in an attempt to forge bipartisan compromise. >> so what can you and nancy pelosi and steve -- steve scalise and kevin mccarthy and speaker ryan due to bridge the bipartisanship? >> i think we can work together.
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i think congressman mccarthy would say that he and i have had the opportunity to work together cooperatively on a number of matters. we need to do more of that. as i say, in the last three months, we have had perfect examples where we have worked on an education bill and an export/import inc.. it was done in a pretty tough way because we had to have a discharge petition. , frankly, i think that the speaker and later pelosi did work together to get an omnibus done. i do not think that would've happened without again john boehner setting the table, but he did set the table, we got it done, we got the debt limit extended until 2017. that did not leave us in crisis when boehner left. scully's, asll do, you pointed out, myself, together,we can work talk to one another, and try to
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work on that which we agree on, rather than focusing always on what we disagree on. not have simply a partisan agenda on the floor, but an agenda that we can, as the president talked about, no child left behind which for some years we have been unable to get done. we got a reauthorization of the secondary education act. >> you mentioned you have been here through five presidents. you have been through several election nears. -- election years. what is your assessment of getting congressional action on -- don in an election year? tougher, and speaker ryan has pointed out that what he wants to do is apparently set the table for the next president. in other words, come up with ideas that are not necessarily compromises, but are what the republicans would do if they were elected.
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in effect, election-year agenda. the problem with that, it is just going to be that, election-year agenda where we have ours, they will have theirs. we really need to come together and have an american agenda. we will see. has indicated that , to sort of effect articulate the republican opinion probably in juxtaposition to some of the republican candidates who i think mr. ryan and others think are bringing the republican party down. >> congressman oyer, the number two in the democratic leadership in the house, we appreciate your time on c-span. >> thank you, sir. name heres a familiar in congress. his father represented the district of new jersey for a good -- >> 23 years.
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>> donald payne junior has had the seat for the last eight. congressman payne, it is your impression of what happened tonight? >> as usual, the president has demonstrated his coolness under agenda setting out an and a vision for his country for the next decade, which only he could. politics,ve of your history will be very kind to this president based on the things he has been able to accomplish with an obstructionist legislature. it has been just incredible things he has been able to do over the course of the last eight years. unemployment is half of what it was when he came into office. the car industry is back on top. the stock market is what you like. guess what, it is up 168%.
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our biggest terroristic threat is gone and buried in the ocean. that theerent things president has been able to accomplish bowed well for this country moving forward -- bode well for this country moving forward. gun control in chicago, as it is for me in new york, is a age issue. i am in lockstep with the government -- with the president. our young people are dying at an alarming rate. black lives matter has brought that to the forefront, and we need to continue to move forward in making sure this nation has the type of sensible gun legislation. the right to bear arms is a very important right in this country, and we all support that, but we must do something about illicit
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trade of guns across state lines. there are no guns manufactured in new jersey. they all come from out of state, and are used in these crimes, so we have to do something. >> your father was very involved on the foreign relations committee, or the foreign affairs committee. do you share his interest? the president talked about foreign aid this evening. >> i share his interest. i am by no stretch of the imagination the expert he was on the different circumstances and the many nations, but i have lent my support. a lot of the leaders from these nations have come to me to follow my father's legacy and i have done that to the extent that i can. very supportive of many issues in africa, liberia and senegal and many of the nations on the african continent, but i am no
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stretch the expert he was on it. >> congressman payne, your governor gave his state of the state i believe today in new jersey. and did you hear from him, what has been your relationship over the years with chris christie? -- retain to remain a a respectful relationship with him, that his wanting to become president has led him to say some things in the last several weeks that i just cannot condone. last week, he referred to the present as "a petulant child." that is the president of the united states, and irrespective of your politics, i would never call him that. i do not agree with a lot of his politics. you have to respect the office. when he was helping us with the sandy issue, it was a lot different than, but now he is a petulant child, i really lost quite a bit of respect, the
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little that i had for the governor. >> congressman donald payne junior, thank you for your time tonight. >> thank you. >> c-span is live from statuary hall, the old house of representatives. you can see here the media and members of congress are still , as we continue to talk with members of congress and get their reaction. the ranking member, the top democrat on the ways and means committee is congressman sander levin, democrat from michigan. congressman levin, it is an election year. the ways and means committee has a new chair. you have been working on tax reform to pass. is it going to happen? >> i think unlikely. it needs to happen. the only way it will happen is if there is true bipartisanship.
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and that is in short supply at the moment, unfortunately. so i think the president has set the right note, and that is a call to see if we could find common ground. where kind of the extreme voices are being heard the most. in fact, when he said here our public life weathers when only the most extreme voices get whithers -- winners -- when only the most extreme voices get attention. >> you have been here in congress 30, 40 years. he also made a line about people staying in congress, and maybe they are the only folks getting health care and benefits from their employers. >> well said. that is why we passed health care reform. that is why a number of us struggled to make sure that we were not different than anybody
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else. some people thought he was kind of to direct with the republicans, but look, it is part of what we fought for. and unfortunately, we could not find any common ground and the republicans continue to try to repeal it without coming up with their own proposal. so i think it was a pointed reference to everybody, in essentially saying what is good for members of congress in terms of health care should be an opportunity for everybody in this country to have the same kind of health care that we have. >> final question -- your younger brother retired a senator for michigan in the last round. last time we talked to them, he was going to buy a condo in downtown detroit and retire. has he done that? >> he has.
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karl says i have taken his retirement harder than he has. state ofith each other the union addresses 32 times in a row, so it is difficult for me. i miss him. but he is there with our bro full-time, and -- barbara full-time, and they bought and place, an apartment house. when i go there, they are just now fixing it up, there are all kinds of memories of the family. >> are you running for reelection this year? the top democrat on the ways in midis -- the ways and means committee. finally we are going to continue talking with members of congress about their reaction to the president's speech. here is somebody you saw on c-span on saturday composting a
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poverty event in columbia, south carolina, senator tim scott. your reaction to what the president had to say about the poverty issue, and is that one that can be confronted in 2016? >> i think it is an issue that can be confronted in 2016. the truth of the matter, the president really glanced in the direction of poverty and did not have any specifics of how to combat poverty. i look forward to having a conversation. my form on saturday, along with speaker ryan, did ignite the fire that is necessary for us to address the issue of not making people less comfortable or more comfortable in poverty, but getting them out of poverty. we need to focus on education, work skills, and getting a job. liveat forum was covered on c-span, but a lot of the reviews on it said it was kind of the first time that real policy had been talked about,
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that issues had been talked about, and some equated it to the fact that donald trump was not president. >> i felt like we did a pretty good job of giving the ,residential candidates time not through soundbites or talking points, but to dive deeper in an issue that affects nearly 50 million americans. is, who wasof it there and who is not there, does that contribute to the ability to have a dialogue on the issue, i cannot speak to that. what i can speak to is the fact that having had the forum and giving air to one of the most important economic issues facing the country today, is a very positive and constructive step in the right direction. >> how did your governor do tonight? >> we now see clearly what she is one of the top three candidates on the short list toward a vice presidential nominee. she did well.
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>> how is mother emmanuelle doing in charleston? >> the wonderful part of it is that this nation has embraced her. our state has starting holding hands in ways that we have not seen in a number of years. scripture, "all things will work together for the good," and what we have seen out of the situation, no one would want that to be repeated, but the restoration and healing opportunities that have manifested has been striking. i think the world has paid attention to the way those family members took the lead positions. it was not politicians, it was family members that were struck, that experienced firsthand this amazing lost, and stood up within about two days and said, we forgive you, we love you, your life can be better. that is an amazing testimony to those families, and
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>> one of the issues that will be talked about is the confederate flag and whether or not south carolina has done anything on that issue. what is the status of the confederate flag? >> i think the 50 for your argument was solved and 23 days following the shooting and it was solved well by our governor and those of us that took a step forward and worked in the nonpartisan fashion. you can see the removal of the flag, it is gone, our state continues to heal. the future is brighter because our state handled amazing challenges in such an amazing way. it was a positive, constructive we that we handled
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will see what happens in the next few weeks. first-time visitor over here to our camera, it is a pleasure to have usurped. -- eight pleasure to have you, sir. we see a word cloud of president obama's final pre state of the union address. his mos used word was america. other words included economy, people, and work. journal,xt washington your reaction to president obama's final state of the union address. washington journal is live at 7:00 a.m. eastern on c-span and you can join the conversation with your calls and comments on facebook and twitter. president obama travels to the university of nebraska in omaha today for a speech on economic
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opportunity. we will have coverage of 5:00 p.m. eastern. >> he said to him, we have college age kids covered in alabama. but it's really the kids in the elementary schools that are suffering. areafrican-american kids getting poor education, horrible buildings. it was separate and not equal. >> documentary filmmaker talks about her latest film rosenwald about julius rosenwald and his partnership with booker t. washington and the african-american communities in the south to build schools and bring elementary education to children in rural america. >> he puts together these houses , why don't we just use the kid houses?
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and the best thing booker t. washington said was no, i want the communities to build it. first these six schools were built and it was amazing. but from that it morphed into 5000 schools all over the south including maryland. east -- 8:00ht at eastern on c-span's q&a. president obama used his final state of the union to talk about the goals he has for the nation through and beyond his presidency. in his speech he highlighted economic stability, innovation, and scientific research, national security, and changing the tone of american politics.
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>> the president of the united states. [applause] president obama: happy new year. thank you. [applause]
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president obama: thank you. [applause] president obama: happy new year.
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[cheering] president obama: thank you. [applause] thank you. thank you so much. i believe these are for you. let's bring this to order here.
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[gavel] >> members of congress, i have the high privilege and the distinct honor of representing to you, the president of the united states. -- presenting to you, the president of the united states. [applause] president obama: thank you. thank you very much. thank you. mr. speaker, mr. vice president, members of congress, my fellow americans, tonight marks the
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eighth year i have come to report on the state of the union. for this final one, i am going to try to make it shorter. [laughter] [applause] i know some of you have to get back to iowa. [applause] [laughter] i have been there. i will be shaking hands afterwards, if you want tips. [laughter] i understand that because it is an election season, expectations for what we will achieve this year are low. mr. speaker, i appreciate the constructive approach that you and other leaders took at the end of last year to pass a budget, and make tax cuts
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permanent for working families. i hope that we can work together this year on some bipartisan priorities, like terminal -- criminal justice reform. [applause] and helping people who are battling prescription drug abuse, and heroine abuse. [applause] who knows we might surprise them , again. but tonight, i want to go easy on the traditional list of proposals for the year ahead. don't worry i have plenty, from , helping students write computer code, and i will keep pushing for progress on the work that i believe still needs to be done. fixing a broken immigration system. [applause] protecting our kids from gun violence. [applause]
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equal pay for equal work. paid leave. raising the minimum wage. [applause] all of these things, all of these things still matter to hard-working families. they are the still -- they are still the right thing to do. i will not let up until they get done. for my final address to this chamber, i don't want to just talk about next year. i want to focus on the next five years. the next 10 years, and beyond. i want to focus on our future. we live in a time of extraordinary change. change that is reshaping the way we live, the way we work, our planet, our place in the world. it has changed and promised amazing medical breakthroughs, but also economic destruction
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-- disruption that has strained working families. it promises education for girls in the most remote villages, but also connects terror plotting an ocean away. it is change that can broaden opportunity, or widen inequality. whether we like it or not, the pace of this change will only accelerate. america has been through big changes before. wars and depressions. the influx of new immigrants. workers fighting for a fair deal. movement to expand civil rights. each time there have been those that tells us to fear the future -- told us to fear the future. who claimed we could slam the brakes on change. who promised glory if we could just get a group or idea that was threatening under control.
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each time we overcame those fears. we did not, in the words of lincoln, adhere to the dogmas of the quiet past. instead we fought a new and acted anew. we make change work for us. always extending america's promise outward, to the next frontier, to more people. and because we did, because we saw opportunity where others saw peril. we emerged stronger and better than before. what was true then, can be true now. our unique strength as a nation,
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our optimism, and work ethic, our spirit of discovery, our diversity, our commitment to rule of law, these things give us everything we need to ensure prosperity and security for generations to come. in fact it is in that spirit that we have made progress these past seven years. that is how we recover from the worst economic crisis in generations. [applause] that is how we reformed our health care system, and reinvented our energy sector. [applause] that is how we delivered more
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care and benefits to our troops coming home, and veterans. [applause] that is how we secured the -- that is how we secured the freedom in every state to marry the person we love. [applause] but, but such progress is not inevitable. it is the result of choices we make, together. and we face such choices right now. will we respond to the changes
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of our time with fear, turning inward as a nation? turning against each other as a people? or will we face the future with confidence in who we are, and what we stand for, in the incredible things we can do together. let's talk about the future. and four big questions that i believe we as a country have to answer, regardless of who the next president is, or who controls the next congress. first, how do we give everyone a fair shot at opportunity and security in this new economy. [applause] second how do we make technology work for us, not against us, especially when it comes to
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solving challenges like climate change? [applause] third, how do we keep america safe and lead the world without becoming its police? [applause] and finally, how can we make our politics reflect what is best in us, and not what is worst? [applause] let me start with the economy, and a basic fact. the united states of america, right now has the strongest, most durable economy in the world. [applause]
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we are in the middle of the longest streak of private sector job creation in history. [applause] more than 14 million new jobs, the strongest two years of job growth since the 1990's, and unemployment rate cut in half. our auto industry just had its best year ever. [applause] that is just part of a manufacturing surge that has created nearly 900,000 new jobs in the past six years. we have done all of this while cutting the deficit by almost three quarters. [applause]
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anyone claiming that america's economy is in decline is peddling fiction. [applause] what is true, and the reason that a lot of americans feel anxious is that the economy has been changing in profound ways. changes that started long before the great recession hit. changes that have not let up. today technology does not just replace jobs on a subway lines, -- on the assembly lines, but any job where work can be automated. companies in the global economy can locate anywhere. they face tougher competition. as a result, workers have less leverage for a raise. companies have less loyalty to their communities, and more, and more wealth and income is concentrated at the very top.
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all of these trends have squeezed it workers. even when they have jobs, even when the economy is growing, it has made it harder for a hard-working family to pull itself out of poverty. harder for young people to start their careers. tougher for workers to retire when they want to. and although none of these trends are unique to america, they do offend our uniquely american belief that everyone who works hard should get a fair shot. for the past seven years our goal has been a growing economy that also works better for everybody. we made progress. we need to make more. despite all of the political
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arguments we have had these past few years, there are some areas where americans broadly agree. we agree that real opportunity requires every american to get the education and training they need to land a good paying job. the bipartisan reform of no was -- no child left behind was an important start. together we have increased early childhood education, lifted high school graduation rates to new highs. boosted graduates and fields like engineering. in the coming years, we should build on that progress, by providing pre-k for all. [applause] and offering every student -- [applause] offering every student the hands-on computer science and math classes that make them job ready on day one.
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we should recruit and support more great teachers for our kids. [applause] and we have to make college affordable for every american. [applause] no hard-working student should be stuck. we have already reduced student loan payments by up to 10% of a borrower's income. that is good, but now we have to cut the cost of college. [applause] providing two years of community college at no cost for every responsible student is one of the best ways to do that. i'm going to keep fighting to get that started this year. it is the right thing to do.
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[applause] but a great education is not all we need in this new economy, we also need benefits and protections that provide a basic measure of security. it is not too much of a stretch to say that some of the only people in america who are going to work the same job in the same place, with the help and retirement package for 30 years are sitting in this chamber. [laughter] for everyone else, especially folks in their 40's and 50's, saving for retirement or bouncing back from job loss has gotten a lot tougher. americans understand that at some point in their careers, in this new economy, he may have to retool, retrain, but they should not lose what they have already worked so hard to build in the process.
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that is why social security and medicare are more than ever. -- more important than ever. we should not weaken them, we should strengthen them. [applause] and for americans short of retirement, basic benefits should be just as mobile as everything else is today. that by the way is what the affordable care act is all about. it is about filling the gaps in employer-based care, so that when you lose a job, or you go back to school, or you strike out and launch the new business , you will still have coverage. nearly 18 million people have gained coverage so far. in the process -- [applause]
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in the process, health care inflation is slower, and our businesses have created jobs every month since it became law. now i am guessing we will not agree on health care anytime soon. [applause] but -- a little applause. [laughter] just a guess. but there should be other ways parties can work together to improve economic security. say a hard-working american loses his job. we should not make sure he can get unemployment insurance. we should make sure that program encourages him to retrain for a business is ready to hire him. if the new job does not pay as much, there should be a system of wage insurance in place, so he can still pay his bills.
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even if he is going from job to job, he should still be able to save for retirement, and take his savings with him. that is the way we make the new economy work better for everybody. i also know speaker ryan has talked about his interest on attacking poverty. i would welcome a serious discussion about strategies we can all support, like expanding tax cuts for low income workers who do not have children. [applause] but there are some areas where we just have to be honest, it has been difficult to find agreement over the last seven years. a lot of them fall under the category of what role the government should play in making
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sure the system is not rigged in favor of the wealthiest and biggest corporations. [applause] it is an honest disagreement. the american people have a choice to make. i believe a thriving rabbit -- private sector is the lifeblood of our economy. there is red tape it needs to be cut. [applause] [cheering] there you go. yeah. but after years now of record corporate profits, working families won't get more opportunity, or bigger paychecks
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just by letting big banks or big oil, or hedge funds make their own rules that everybody else's expense. [applause] middle class families are not going to feel more secure because we allow attacks on collective bargaining to go unanswered. food stamp recipients did not cause the financial crisis. recklessness on wall street did. [applause] pres. obama: immigrants aren't the reason wages haven't gone up. those decisions are made in the boardrooms that too often put quarterly earnings over long-term returns. it's sure not the average family
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watching tonight that avoids paying taxes through offshore accounts. the point is, i believe that in this new economy, workers and startups and small businesses need more of a voice, not less. the rules should work for them. i am not alone in this. this year, i plan to lift up the many businesses who've figured out that doing right by their workers or their customers or their communities ends up being good for their shareholders. and i want to spread those best practices across america. that is part of a brighter future. [applause] pres. obama: in fact, it turns out, many of our best corporate citizens are also our most creative. this brings me to e second big question we as a country have to answer -- how do we reignite that spirit of innovation to meet our biggest challenges?
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sixty years ago, when the russians beat us into space, we didn't deny sputnik was up there. [laughter] obama: we didn't argue about the science, or shrink our research and development budget. we built a space program almost overnight, and twelve years later, we were walking on the moon. [applause] pres. obama: that spirit of discovery is in our dna. america is thomas edison and the wright brothers and george washington carver. america is grace hopper and katherine johnson and sally ride.


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