Full Text Campaign Buzz August 13, 2012: President Barack Obama’s Speech at a Campaign Event at Herman Park in Boone, Iowa

CAMPAIGN 2012

CAMPAIGN BUZZ 2012

THE HEADLINES….

Remarks by the President at Campaign Event — Boone, IA

Source: WH, 8-13-12 

Herman Park
Boone, Iowa

6:10 P.M. CDT

THE PRESIDENT:  Hello, everybody!  (Applause.)  Thank you!  It’s good to be back!  Thank you so much.  (Applause.)  It is good to be back in Iowa, and it’s good to be back in Boone County!  (Applause.)

A couple of folks I want to acknowledge — first of all, your outstanding former governor and now I think the best Secretary of Agriculture we’ve ever had — Tom Vilsack.  (Applause.)  A great friend of mine, my co-chair for my campaign when I was just getting started in 2007-2008 — he took a risk on me when nobody could pronounce my name — Tom Miller is in the house, Attorney General of the great state of Iowa.  (Applause.) And please give Dave a big round of applause for the great introduction.  (Applause.)

Dave may have mentioned he is a music teacher.  And I told him that Malia and Sasha have been practicing their piano.  (Laughter.)  And Malia plays a little flute.  But he mentioned that he thought — he had heard me sing, and he thought that I had really good pitch.  (Applause.)  So Dave says he’s got a band and maybe after I’m finished with the presidency, he said maybe I could be front man for the band.  (Applause.)  He said maybe I could be lead singer.  That would be all right.  (Applause.)

But, listen, it is wonderful to be back in Iowa.  It is wonderful to see some familiar faces and some good friends on a beautiful summer day.  It was on your front porches and in some of your backyards where our movement for change started.  (Applause.)  We spent a lot of time in Iowa, and I felt like an adopted son of Iowa.  (Applause.)  We took bus tours all throughout the state — although I’ve got to admit the bus wasn’t as nice as the one I’ve got now.  (Laughter.)  And we went to school gyms and family farms and small businesses all across the state.

But here’s the thing — our journey is not done.  It’s not done.  So I’m going to spend the next three days driving all the way across the state, just like we did in 2007 — from Council Bluffs all the way to the Quad Cities — (applause) — and I’m going to work just as hard, maybe harder, in this campaign as I did in the last one because the choice that you in November couldn’t be bigger.

It is not just a choice between two candidates or two political parties.  But more than any election in recent memory, this is a choice between two fundamentally different visions about how we move this country forward.  (Applause.)  And the direction that we choose — the direction that you choose when you walk into that voting booth in November is going to have an impact not just on your lives, but on the lives of these young people here, the lives of your children, the lives of your grandchildren for decades to come.

Think about it.  When we came together four years ago — and it wasn’t just Democrats, we had independents and some Republicans get involved — the idea was to restore the basic bargain that made this country great, the basic idea that says if work hard in this country then you can get ahead; that if you put in the effort and you are responsible, then you can find a job that pays the bills.  You can have a home that you call your own. You won’t go bankrupt when you get sick.  You can retire with some dignity and some respect.  And maybe most importantly, you know that your kids can get a great education and they can dream bigger and do even better than you did.  (Applause.)

That is the core of the American Dream.  That’s the American promise.  (Applause.)  Now, the problem is, is that we had gone through a decade where that promise wasn’t being met, it wasn’t being kept.  So we had gone through a decade where jobs were being shipped overseas, where you were working harder but you were bringing in less.  Costs of college, costs of health care were all going up — cost of food, cost of gas all were going up. We ran two wars on a credit card.  Tax cuts we didn’t need and that didn’t create jobs.  And it all culminated in the worst financial crisis since the Great Depression.

So we knew that meeting these challenges that had been building up for over a decade, that it wasn’t going to be easy.  We knew it was going to take more than one year, or one term, or even one President.  But what we also knew was that Americans are tougher than tough times.  And so, even though this crisis that hit us in 2008 and 2009 was bad — even though a lot of folks lost their jobs and a lot of folks lost homes and a lot of folks lost savings, so that the middle class felt even more under the gun than they were before — what we knew was that the American people are resilient and we are tough.  (Applause.)

And so, for the last three and a half years we’ve rolled up our sleeves and we’ve worked hard.  And small businesses have kept their doors open.  And folks, even if they got laid off, they’ve retrained to find new jobs.  And we created 4.5 million new jobs, half a million more in manufacturing.  The auto industry is back on top.  (Applause.)

And so, we’ve made progress but we’ve got a lot more work to do.  We’ve got a lot more work to do.

AUDIENCE MEMBER:  We can do it!

THE PRESIDENT:  We can do it.  I agree.  (Applause.)  We can.

Now, here’s the thing.  Some people, they’re naysayers and they say, oh, America is declining.  And they try to paint things as dark as possible, especially during election time.  But here’s what I want everybody to know.  We’ve got so many things going for us compared to the rest of the world.  We’ve still got the best workers in the world.  We’ve got the best entrepreneurs in the world.  We’ve got the best scientists and the best researchers in the world.  We’ve got the best colleges and the best universities in the world.  (Applause.)  We know how to work hard.  And we’re a young country and we’re a country that draws on the diversity of folks who want to come here from all around the world to be part of this American Dream.  And most importantly, the crisis has not changed our character.  It hasn’t changed who we are.  It hasn’t changed our sense of determination and our sense of neighborliness and our understanding that we’re in this thing together.

And so we’ve come together, just like we did in 2008, because our mission is not yet finished.  We are here to build an economy where hard work pays off.  And so, no matter who you are or what you look like or where you come from, you can make it if you try here in America.  (Applause.)

That’s what this campaign is about and that’s why I’m running for a second term as President of the United States of America.  (Applause.)

AUDIENCE:  Four more years!  Four more years!

THE PRESIDENT:  Just as I said that we’ve got a lot of things going for us, there aren’t any quick fixes or easy solutions to some of our challenges.  We’re going to have to keep working.  We’re going to meet these challenges.  But the main problem we’ve got is not a lack of good ideas.  It’s not that we don’t have good solutions to our problems.  The big problem we’ve got right now is politics in Washington.  (Applause.)  The big problem we’ve got is one party just thinks that compromise is a dirty word.  And they’ve got an economic theory that basically wants to go back to the old top-down economics that got us into this mess in the first place.

Now, look, over the weekend my opponent chose as his running mate the ideological leader of the Republicans in Congress.  And I’ve gotten to know Congressman Ryan.  He’s a good man.  He’s a family man.  He’s a very articulate spokesperson for Governor Romney’s vision.  The problem is it’s the wrong vision for America.  It’s a vision that I fundamentally disagree with.  (Applause.)

Their main recipe for solving America’s problems is getting rid of regulations on big corporations and big banks, and then giving more tax breaks to the wealthiest Americans.  And their theory is that somehow that’s going to lead to jobs and prosperity for everybody.  In fact, the centerpiece of Governor Romney’s entire economic plan is a new — you heard this from Dave — is a new $5 trillion tax cut, a lot of it going to the wealthiest Americans.

Now, keep in mind, these are the folks who say the deficit and the debt are the biggest problem we’ve got.  And yet, they now want to give a $5 trillion tax cut.  I know the numbers get so big, but I just want you to get a sense — our entire defense budget annually is $500 billion.  So what this means is, a $5 trillion tax break over 10 years, that’s the equivalent of the entire defense budget going out as a tax cut every single year.

Now, keep in mind that this is going disproportionately to the wealthiest Americans.  Last week, we found out that Governor Romney expects you, middle-class families, to pick up the tab for this big tax cut.

AUDIENCE:  No!

THE PRESIDENT:  And please don’t take my word for it.  You can go to their website and look at their plan.  And then independent economists have looked at this thing and they said that Governor Romney’s tax plan would actually raise taxes on middle-class families with children by an average of $2,000.

AUDIENCE:  Booo —

THE PRESIDENT:  Now, keep in mind, this is not $2,000 to reduce the deficit, or to grow jobs, or to invest in education, or make college more affordable, or to rebuild our roads.  This is $2,000 to give another $250,000 tax cut to people making more than $3 million a year.

AUDIENCE:  Booo —

THE PRESIDENT:  Now, let me just see a show of hands.  How many folks are making more than $3 million a year?  (Laughter.)  Okay, this guy back here.  (Laughter.)  I’m looking for a campaign contribution.  (Laughter and applause.)  Let me tell you something — they have tried to sell us this trickle-down fairy dust before.  And it did not work then; it won’t work now.  It’s not a plan to create jobs.  It’s not a plan to cut the deficit.  And it’s not a plan to move our economy forward.

We don’t need more tax cuts for the wealthiest Americans.  We don’t need a tax cut for Mr. Romney.  We don’t need a tax cut for me.  We need tax relief for middle-class families who are out there working, to make sure that their kids are healthy and their kids can go to college.  (Applause.)

That’s the choice in this election.  That’s why I’m running for President — because I’ve got a different idea.  I’ve got a different idea than Mr. Romney.

When I came into office, I promised that I would cut middle-class taxes.  And you know what, I’ve kept that promise.  (Applause.)

AUDIENCE MEMBER:  You did!

THE PRESIDENT:  When you hear these Republicans saying that, oh, Obama is all about spending and raising taxes — let me tell you, the typical family is paying $3,600 less in taxes than when I came into office.  (Applause.)  That’s the truth.  That’s a fact.

So now I want to keep taxes right where they are on the first $250,000 of everybody’s income.  So if your family makes $250,000 a year or less — like 98 percent of Americans — you won’t see your income taxes increase by a single dime next year under my plan.  Not one dime.  (Applause.)

Now, if you’re fortunate enough to be in the other 2 percent, you’ll still get a tax cut for your first $250,000 worth of income.  But after that, we’re asking you to contribute a little bit more so we can pay down our deficit and invest in things like education that help our economy grow.  (Applause.)

I’ll make sure the government does its part by cutting away spending we don’t need.  We’ve already cut a trillion dollars of spending we didn’t need and we can do more.  I want to do another trillion, trillion and a half of cuts.

But we’ve also got to match that with folks like me and Governor Romney doing our fair share.  And all we’re asking is that we go back to the same rates that we paid under Bill Clinton.  (Applause.)  And you know what, that was a time when our economy created nearly 23 million new jobs, the biggest budget surplus in history, and millionaires did pretty good too.
See, what happens is that when a teacher or a construction worker or a family farm or a receptionist or a nurse, when they’ve got a little extra money, what do you do?  You end up spending it on things you need.  So maybe you haven’t got a new car in 10, 15 years — you go out and buy a car.  Or maybe the washing machine is broke and you decide to buy a new washing machine.  Maybe you go out to a restaurant on a special occasion. Maybe you take a vacation once in a while.  That money goes into the economy; businesses have more customers; they hire more workers and everybody is better off from top to bottom.

I don’t believe in top-down economics.  I believe in middle class-out economics.  I believe in bottom-up economics.  That’s how you grow an economy.  That’s the choice in this election.  And that’s why I’m running for a second term as President of the United States.  (Applause.)

There’s a difference between me and Mr. Romney on almost every issue.  When the American auto industry was on the brink of collapse, more than 1 million jobs were on the line, Governor Romney said let’s “let Detroit go bankrupt.”  I said let’s bet on the American worker.  And three years later, the American auto industry is back on top.  GM is number one again.  (Applause.)
Now, so I want to make sure that hi-tech manufacturing jobs are taking root right here in Boone — not in China, not in Germany.

Governor Romney, he likes to tout his private sector experience.  But a lot of that experience is investing in companies that were called “pioneers” of outsourcing.  We don’t need more outsourcing.  We need some insourcing.  (Applause.)
I want to take away tax breaks.  Let’s stop giving tax breaks to companies that are shipping jobs overseas.  Let’s give those tax breaks to companies that are investing right here in Iowa, right here in the United States of America.  (Applause.)  That’s the choice in this election.

My opponent and I disagree when it comes to homegrown energy like wind.  Wind power is creating new jobs all across Iowa.  But Governor Romney says he wants to end the tax credit for wind energy producers.  Now, America generates more than twice as much electricity from wind than when I took office.  (Applause.)  That’s right.  The wind industry supports about 7,000 jobs right here in Iowa.  Without these wind energy tax credits, those jobs are at risk — 37,000 jobs across the country would be at risk.

So my attitude is let’s stop giving taxpayer subsidies to oil companies that don’t need them, and let’s invest in clean energy that will put people back to work right here in Iowa.  That’s a choice in this election.  (Applause.)

I’m running because in 2008, I promised to end the war in Iraq — and I did.  (Applause.)  I promised to go after al Qaeda and bin Laden — and we did.  (Applause.)  We’re putting a timeline to get our troops out of Afghanistan and put Afghans in charge of their own security.  So all of this is possible only because of the extraordinary sacrifice and service of our men and women in uniform.  And we are so proud of them.  (Applause.)

Now, we’ve got to do right by them.  We’ve got to make sure we’re serving our veterans as well as they’ve served us.  (Applause.)  That’s why we’ve put more money into the VA, making sure that folks are getting the benefits that they have earned, whether it’s the wounds that are seen or the wounds that are unseen.

But it also means that after a decade of war, we need to do some nation-building here at home, so that all our men and women in uniform are coming home to good-paying jobs.  (Applause.)
That’s why I’ve said let’s take half the money that we were spending on war and let’s put folks back to work right here in the United States of America.  (Applause.)  Let’s put them back to work rebuilding schools and rebuilding roads and rebuilding bridges.  (Applause.)  And let’s create a Veterans Jobs Corp to help hire veterans to become cops and firefighters in communities that need them the most.  (Applause.)

That’s the America we want to build.  That’s the choice in this election.  That’s why I’m running for a second term as President of the United States.  (Applause.)

I’m running because I want to make sure that once again, America has the best education system in the world.  (Applause.) So I want to help our schools hire and reward the best teachers, especially in math and science.  I want to give 2 million more Americans a chance to go to community colleges to get trained for the jobs that businesses are hiring for right now.  (Applause.)

And we have a plan to push colleges and universities to bring down their cost of tuition, because young people, they can’t be burdened with tens of thousands of dollars’ worth of debt when they go to school.  A higher education isn’t a luxury anymore.  It is an economic necessity in the 21st century.  And we are going to help them get the education that they need.  (Applause.)

Across the board, Governor Romney and I just see the world differently.  When it comes to housing, I want to make sure that everybody who hasn’t yet taken advantage of these historically low interest rates has a chance to refinance their homes.  It can save folks up to $3,000.  Governor Romney’s plan, he said just let the housing market bottom out.  That’s not a solution.  That’s part of the problem.

He has got a different view than I do in terms of how we move this country forward.  When it comes to health care, I guess he used to agree with me because he had the same health care plan that I do in Massachusetts.  (Applause.)  And, by the way, that plan is working pretty good.  (Applause.)

Now, he says he wants to kill Obamacare.  Well, first of all, I don’t mind it being called Obamacare because, it’s true, I do care.  That’s why I passed the bill.  I do care.  (Applause.) I care about folks who have preexisting conditions and couldn’t get insurance.  That’s why we passed the bill.  (Applause.)  I care about the 6.5 million young people who can now stay on their parent’s plan because of this bill.  (Applause.)  I care about the seniors who were paying too much for their prescription drugs.  We’re closing the doughnut hole because of this bill and lowering their prescription drug costs.  (Applause.)

So I don’t believe that you should go broke when you get sick in this country.  And I’ll work with anybody who wants to continue to improve our health care system.  But the Supreme Court has spoken — the law is here to stay.  We’re not spending the next four years refighting that battle.  (Applause.)  We’re moving forward.  We’re not going backwards.  That’s a choice in this election.  (Applause.)

So, Boone, all these things — whether it’s bringing manufacturing jobs back, putting folks back to work in construction, protecting your health care, making sure our kids are getting the best education possible and they can afford to go to college — all these things that make up that American Dream, that make up a middle-class life, they all tie together.  They’re central to that idea that made this country great, the promise that if you work hard you get ahead; that everybody has a fair shot and everybody is doing their fair share and everybody is playing by the same set of rules.

It’s the promise that our parents and our grandparents passed down to us.  That’s the promise that allowed me as the child of a single mom to become President of the United States.  (Applause.)  It’s the promise that allowed Michelle, whose dad was a blue-collar worker and her mom was a secretary, to become the First Lady.  (Applause.)  It’s the promise that all of you have seen in your own lives.  And now, it’s time for us to pass that down to our kids and our grandkids.

So over the next three months, the other side will spend more money than you have ever seen running the same ad over and over again, basically, which says, the economy is not where it should be and it’s Obama’s fault.  They just repeat it over and over again.  They’ve got different variations, but it’s all the same theme.  And —

AUDIENCE MEMBER:  They’re not right!

THE PRESIDENT:  Well, they’re not constrained by the facts, in terms of these ads that they run.  (Applause.)  They’ll just make stuff up.  And that may be a plan to win the election, but the reason they’ve got to do that is because they know they don’t have a plan to create jobs.  They don’t have a plan to grow the economy.  They don’t have a plan to revive the middle class.  What they’re selling, you’re not buying.  That’s why they don’t talk about it.

I’ve got that plan.  And we can make it work, but I’m going to need your help.  I‘ve got to make sure everybody here is registered to vote.  I’ve got to make sure everybody is getting their friends and their neighbors, their family members to register to vote.  (Applause.)  You can get a voter registration form online.  You go to GottaRegister.com.  That’s gotta — g-o-t-t-a –GottaRegister.com.

But if you guys get involved, we can’t lose.  I’ve been outspent before and I’ve been counted out before.  But the reason I love this state is because all of you gave me a chance.  (Applause.)  I had a chance to talk to you and meet you, and share stories with you.

And I used to say back in 2088 that I’m not a perfect man and I won’t be a perfect President.  But I told you I’d always tell you what I thought, always tell you where I stood, and I’d fight every single day as hard as I knew how for you.  And the reason is because I see myself in you.  (Applause.)  When I see your grandparents, I see my grandparents.  And when I see your kids, I see Malia and Sasha.

And we know what it’s like to work and to fight hard to get ahead.  And I want everybody in America to have that same chance that I had.  Because we have come too far to turn back now, Iowa. (Applause.)  We’ve got too many good jobs to create.  We’ve got too many great teachers to hire.  We’ve got too many schools to rebuild.  We’ve got too many students who need to get a college education.  (Applause.)  We’ve got too many wind farms to build.  We’ve got more troops we’ve got to bring back home.  We’ve got to open up more doors to opportunity.  (Applause.)

And if you’ll stand with me and work with me, and organize with me and knock on doors with me, Boone, I promise you, we will win Iowa and we will win this election.  (Applause.)  And we’ll remind the world why this is the greatest nation on Earth.  (Applause.)

God bless you, and God bless America.  (Applause.)

END
5:40 P.M. CDT

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Full Text Campaign Buzz August 13, 2012: President Barack Obama’s Speech at a Campaign Event at McIntosh Family Farm, Missouri Valley, Iowa

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CAMPAIGN BUZZ 2012

THE HEADLINES….

Remarks by the President at McIntosh Family Farms, Missouri Valley, Iowa

Source: WH, 8-13-12

McIntosh Family Farm
Missouri Valley, Iowa

1:10 P.M. CDT

THE PRESIDENT:  Today we are here at the McIntosh Family Farms, here in Missouri Valley, Iowa, and we just got a tour from Dean, Don, Richard and Roger.  And like a lot of families in this area and across America, the McIntoshes are suffering under one of the worst droughts in 50 years.

We’ve just been through the warmest 12-month period ever recorded, and right now more than 60 percent of the country is under drought conditions.  It’s hot, it’s dry, and the summer is not over yet.

Things are especially tough for farmers and ranchers, like the McIntoshes, who depend on a good growing season to pay the bills and keep a roof over their heads.  The McIntosh family has been farming in the Missouri Valley for 96 years, so they’ve seen just about everything, but this is the worst drought they can remember in decades.  As a result, their corn yield is off by about a third, and some of their neighbors in surrounding areas are struggling even worse.

Here in Iowa, almost half of the corn crop and more than a third of the soybean crop is in poor or very poor condition.  Livestock producers are having trouble feeding their herds.  Crops and livestock are a $30 billion business in Iowa, and that’s a huge chunk of the economy that’s being put at risk.  And states all across the heartland have it just as bad.

Now, the best way to help these states is for Congress to act.  They need to pass a farm bill that not only helps farmers and ranchers respond to natural disasters, but also makes necessary reforms and gives them some long-term certainty.  But the folks suffering from this drought can’t wait for Congress to do its job.  So in the meantime, I’ve made sure that my administration, under the leadership of Secretary Tom Vilsack, is doing everything we can to provide relief to those who need it.

I’ve directed the Department of Agriculture and the Small Business Administration to help give farmers and small businesses across 32 states access to low-interest emergency loans.  We’ve opened up federal land for grazing.  We’re working with insurance companies to give farmers a short grace period on their premiums, since money will be tight for a lot of families at the end of the crop year.  And last week, we announced another $30 million to help get more water to livestock and restore land affected by the drought.

Today we’re going to go even further, and we’re focusing on helping people who make their living by bringing cattle, pigs, sheep, and other animals to market.  The way things work right now, farmers who raise crops are eligible for subsidized insurance to help cushion the blow if disaster strikes.  But livestock producers don’t have that option.  So when grasslands dry up and they’ve got to sell their animals early, it’s a huge financial blow and can affect markets all across the country.  We can make a difference, though, and here’s what we’re going to do.

It turns out that the federal government buys a lot of meat for military bases, hospitals, colleges, food banks and cafeterias.  And because of the drought, there are a lot of folks out there that are trying to sell meat right now.  So just like you might buy more chicken when it’s on sale and freeze it, we are going to stock up.  Prizes are low; farmers and ranchers need help; so it makes sense.  It makes sense for farmers who get to sell more of their product, and it makes sense for taxpayers who will save money because we’re getting food we would have bought anyway at a better price.

And we’re not just talking about a few strips of bacon here. Today the Department of Agriculture announced that it will buy up to $100 million worth of pork products, $50 million worth of chicken, and $20 million worth of lamb and farm-raised catfish.  And the Department of Defense, which bought about 94 million pounds of beef and 64 million pounds of pork last year, will encourage their vendors to buy more now and freeze if for later.

Understand this won’t solve the problem.  We can’t make it rain.  But this will help families like the McIntoshes in states across the country, including here in Iowa.  And we’re going to keep doing what we can to help because that’s what we do.  We are Americans.  We take care of each other.  And when our neighbors hit a rough patch, we step up and help out.

So my message to the McIntoshes and everybody who is suffering through the drought, we understand that we depend on you, America depends on you to put food on the table and feed our families, and as a consequence, we’re going to make sure that we’re there for you — not just today, but every day until this drought passes.  That is a promise.  And as President, I’ll do everything in my power to make sure that you get the relief that you deserve.

So, thank you very much, everybody.  God bless you, and God bless America.  (Applause.)

END
1:16 P.M. CDT

Full Text Campaign Buzz August 13, 2012: Mitt Romney’s Speech in St. Augustine, Florida — President Obama Has Failed To Deliver The Jobs Americans Need

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Mitt Romney opens bus tour in Florida singing praises of Paul Ryan

Source: MiamiHerald.com, 8-13-12

Continuing his swing-state bus tour, Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney visited this historic city Monday singing the praises of his newly announced running mate and continuing his attacks on the policies of President Obama….READ MORE

Mitt Romney: President Obama Has Failed To Deliver The Jobs Americans Need

Source: Mitt Romney Press, 8-13-12
“Number one was being able to create jobs, but I hope he understands that he hasn’t done that … It’s a moral failure for a country as successful as ours not to have created these jobs. Mr. President, by your own measure you’ve failed to deliver the jobs Americans need.” – Mitt Romney

Remarks
St. Augustine, FL

August 13, 2012

Click Here To Watch Mitt Romney

Mitt Romney: “The President’s idea, for instance, for Medicare was to cut it by $700 billion. That’s not the right answer. We want to make sure that we preserve and protect Medicare. The President’s plan for our budget deficit was to make it worse. And Paul Ryan and I are going to get America to cut our spending and to finally get us to a balanced budget. Now, as you know, about four years ago candidate Obama was speaking in Denver to the Democratic Convention, and he got up there and made a lot of promises. And he did it in front of those Greek columns. I don’t think he’ll be standing in front of Greek columns at this year’s convention. He won’t want to remind people of Greece because that’s where he’s taking our country if we don’t get off the road we’re on. He said that he would be able to measure progress and measure success by a whole series of his own standards. Number one was being able to create jobs, but I hope he understands that he hasn’t done that—23 million Americans out of work or stopped looking for work and can’t find the jobs they need to put food on the table for their families. It’s unacceptable. It’s a moral failure for a country as successful as ours not to have created these jobs. Mr. President, by your own measure you’ve failed to deliver the jobs Americans need.”

Full Text Campaign Buzz August 13, 2012: President Barack Obama’s Speech at a Campaign Event Council Bluffs, Iowa — Blasts Paul Ryan in Iowa for Blocking Farm Bill

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CAMPAIGN BUZZ 2012

THE HEADLINES….

Obama Blasts Ryan in Iowa for Blocking Farm Bill

Source: ABC News Radio, 8-13-12

JIM WATSON/AFP/GettyImages

Kicking off his campaign tour through Iowa, President Obama today wasted no time attacking Mitt Romney’s new running mate, accusing Rep. Paul Ryan of blocking aid to ranchers and farmers who have been hurt by the severe drought….READ MORE

 

Remarks by the President at Campaign Event — Council Bluffs, IA

Source: WH, 8-13-12

Bayliss Park
Council Bluffs, IA

11:32 A.M. CDT

THE PRESIDENT:  Hello, Iowa!  (Applause.)  It’s good to be back!  (Applause.)  Well, it is good to be back in Iowa!  (Applause.)  I miss you guys.

AUDIENCE:  Obama!  Obama!  Obama!

THE PRESIDENT:  Thank you!

First of all, can everybody please give Patricia a big round of applause for the great introduction?  (Applause.)  A couple other people I want to acknowledge — your outstanding former governor, now I think the best Secretary of Agriculture we’ve ever had — Tom Vilsack.  (Applause.)  Congressman Leonard Boswell.  (Applause.)  And Mayor Tom Hanafan.  (Applause.)

See, the sun is coming out — (applause.)  I love being back in Iowa.  Now, we’re starting here in Council Bluffs, but we’re going to be heading east and I think I’m going to end at the State Fair.  (Applause.)  Michelle has told me I cannot have a fried Twinkie.  (Laughter.)  But I will be checking out the butter cow and I understand this year there’s a chocolate moose.  (Laughter.)  So I’m going to have to take a look at that if I can.

The last time I went to the State Fair, Secret Service let me do the bumper cars, but they said this year — I wasn’t President yet, so I could do that.  (Laughter.)  But not this time.

Now, before I get started, I just want to say a few words about the drought, because it’s had such an impact on this state and all across the country.  Right now folks here in Iowa and across the heartland, we’re suffering from one of the worst droughts in 50 years.  Farmers, ranchers depend on a good crop season to pay the bills and put a roof over their heads.  And I know things are tough right now.

The best way to help these states is for the folks in Congress to pass a farm bill that not only helps farmers and ranchers respond to natural disasters, but also makes some necessary reforms and gives farmers and ranchers some long-term certainty.

Unfortunately, right now, too many members of Congress are blocking the farm bill from becoming law.

AUDIENCE:  Booo —

THE PRESIDENT:  I am told that Governor Romney’s new running mate, Paul Ryan, might be around Iowa the next few days — he is one of the leaders of Congress standing in the way.

AUDIENCE:  Booo —

THE PRESIDENT:  So if you happen to see Congressman Ryan, tell him how important this farm bill is to Iowa and our rural communities.  We’ve got to put politics aside when it comes to doing the right thing for rural America and for Iowa.  (Applause.)

Now, it’s always a problem waiting for Congress.  So in the meantime, I’ve made sure my administration, led by Tom Vilsack, is doing everything we can to provide relief to those who need it.  So last week, we announced $30 million to help ranchers and farmers get more water to livestock and rehabilitate land affected by drought.
And today, we’re announcing that the federal government will help livestock producers by purchasing over $150 million worth of meat and fish right now, while prices are low — we’ll freeze it for later, but — we’ve got a lot of freezers.  (Laughter.)  And that way, that will help ranchers who are going through tough times right now, and also, over the long term, obviously that food is going to be spent by folks at the Pentagon and other places.
America depends on farmers and ranchers to put food on the table; depends on farmers and ranchers to feed our families.  So we’ve got to be there for them — not just today, but tomorrow, and every day until this drought passes — because we are Americans, that’s what we do.  We take care of each other.  And when tough times strike our neighbors, we give them a hand.  (Applause.)
Now, that speaks to the larger idea of why I’m here, the notion that I’m my brother’s keeper, I’m my sister’s keeper, the idea that we’re in this together, that was at the heart of the journey that began here in Iowa five years ago.  (Applause.)  We spent a lot of time on bus tours like this one — at school gyms and family farms and small businesses across this state – although, I have to say the bus we had wasn’t as nice as this one.  (Laughter.)  We used to get some buses.  (Laughter.)
And that campaign back in 2007-2008, it had plenty of ups and downs, but no matter what, you, the people of Iowa, had my back.  (Applause.)  You had my back.  When the pundits had written us off, when we were down in the polls, you believed in me, and I believed in you.  And it was on your front porches and in your backyards where the movement for change in this country began.

But our journey is not finished.  Not yet.  I’m going to spend the next three days driving all across this state just like I did in 2007 — from Council Bluffs to the Quad Cities — because once more, you face a choice in November.  And that choice could not be bigger.  It is not just a choice between two candidates or two political parties.  More than any other election in recent memory, this is a choice between two fundamentally different visions of this country and the path that we have to take.

And the direction that you choose when you walk into that voting booth in November is going to have an impact not just on your lives but on your children’s lives, your grandchildren’s lives for decades to come.  This one counts.  (Applause.)

AUDIENCE:  Four more years!  Four more years!  Four more years!  Four more years!

THE PRESIDENT:  Think about this, Council Bluffs.  Four years ago, we came together — and it wasn’t just Democrats, it was independents and some Republicans — because we understood that we needed to restore the basic bargain that made this country great, the basic deal that created the greatest middle class and the most prosperous economy the world has ever known.

And it’s a simple bargain.  It says if you work hard, your work should be rewarded.  If you act responsibly, and you put in enough effort, you should be able to find a job that pays the bills, have a home you can call your own, count on health care when you get sick — (applause) — put away enough to retire with dignity and respect — (applause) — and most of all, give your kids an education that allows them to dream even bigger than you did, and do even better than you did.  That’s the American promise.  (Applause.)  That’s the American Dream.

And the reason we came together was because we had seen a decade in which that dream was being betrayed.  We had gone through a decade where jobs were being shipped overseas, where you were working harder but making less while the cost of everything from health care to a college education kept on going up.  And it all culminated in the worst financial crisis since the Great Depression.

And so we knew that restoring the basic bargain that made this country was not going to be easy.  We knew it would take more than one year, or one term, or even one President.  And that was before the crisis hit and we saw friends and neighbors lose their job, or lose their home, lose their savings, pushing the American Dream even further out of reach for too many working people.

But over the last three and a half years, we’ve seen America’s grit.  You folks are tougher than any tough time.  (Applause.)  When we get knocked down we stand back up.  (Applause.)  Some workers lost their jobs — they went back to community college, got retrained and now have got a new job.  Small businesses kept their doors open by hook or by crook.  And so, slowly, we’ve seen 4.5 million new jobs created, half a million new manufacturing jobs — the most since the great — most since the 1990s.

And what we realized was that no matter how bad the crisis was, one thing did not change, and that is the character of the American people and the resilience of the American people.  (Applause.)  And what hasn’t changed is our determination to do what we came together in 2008 to do — and that is to make sure that in America hard work pays off — so that no matter who you are, or where you come from, or what you look like, you can make it here in America if you try.  (Applause.)

That’s what this campaign is about, Iowa.  And that’s why I’m running for a second term as President of the United States of America.  (Applause.)

I told you — four years ago I said there aren’t going to be quick fixes, there won’t be easy solutions.  The challenges we face had been building up for decades.  And that’s still true today.  But I want everybody to know that we have the capacity to meet every challenge.  We’ve got the best workers in the world.  We’ve got the best entrepreneurs in the world.  We’ve got the best colleges, the best universities, the best researchers in the world, the best scientists in the world.  We’re still a young nation.  We’ve got the greatest diversity of talent and ingenuity — people come here from every corner of the globe.  They want to be here.  So whatever the naysayers may say, or folks who try to make things look dark, listen, there is not another country on Earth that wouldn’t trade places with the United States of America.  (Applause.)

What’s holding us back right now is Washington politics.

AUDIENCE:  Yes!

THE PRESIDENT:  You’ve got folks on the other side who think “compromise” is a dirty word, and whose main idea is to go back to the same old top-down economics that got us into this mess in the first place.

This weekend, my opponent, Mr. Romney, chose as his running mate the ideological leader of the Republicans in Congress.  And I’ve got to tell you, I know Congressman Ryan.  He’s a good man, he’s a family man.  He is an articulate spokesman for Governor Romney’s vision.  But the problem is that vision is one that I fundamentally disagree with. (Applause.)

Governor Romney and his allies in Congress, they think that if we just get rid of more regulations on big corporations and give more tax breaks to the wealthiest Americans, if we end Medicare as we know it, make it a voucher system, then somehow this is all going to lead to jobs and prosperity for everybody.

AUDIENCE:  Booo —

THE PRESIDENT:  The centerpiece of Mr. Romney’s entire economic plan is a new $5 trillion tax cut, a lot of it going to the very wealthiest Americans.

AUDIENCE:  Booo —

THE PRESIDENT:  Last week, an independent study — not by me, but by independent economists — said that Governor Romney’s plan would actually raise taxes on middle-class families with children by an average of $2,000 apiece.

AUDIENCE:  Booo —

THE PRESIDENT:  Now, this wouldn’t be done — not to reduce the deficit.  It’s not going to be done to create jobs or put folks back to work rebuilding our roads or bridges or schools.  This is you guys paying an extra $2,000 to give another $250,000 tax cut to folks who are making more than $3 million a year.

AUDIENCE:  No!

THE PRESIDENT:  Does this sound familiar to you?  They have tried to sell us this trickle-down theory before.  And guess what — every time it’s been tried it has not worked.  It did not work then; it won’t work now.  It won’t create jobs.  It won’t lower our deficit.  It is not a plan to move our economy forward.  We do not need more tax cuts for the wealthiest Americans — we need tax relief for working families.  (Applause.)

You need tax relief — folks who are trying to raise kids and keep them healthy and put a roof over their heads and send them to college.  And that’s the choice in this election.  That’s the reason I’m running again.

Four years ago, I promised to cut middle-class taxes — and by the way, that’s exactly what I’ve done.  (Applause.)  The average working family here in Iowa and across the country has seen their tax rates go down about $3,600.  So when you see — when you hear the other side talking about Democrats raising your taxes — your taxes are lower since I’ve been President.  (Applause.)  That’s the truth.

Now, I want to keep your taxes right where they are for the first $250,000 of everybody’s income.  So if your family makes under $250,000 — which, by the way, is 98 percent of Americans — you won’t see your income taxes go up by a single dime next year.  (Applause.)  Ninety-seven percent of small businesses will not see their taxes go up.  (Applause.)

But here’s the thing, Council Bluffs.  This is important. If —

AUDIENCE MEMBER:  And Omaha!

THE PRESIDENT:  And Omaha.  We love you.  (Applause.)  Didn’t want to leave our Nebraska folks left out here. (Applause.)

But here’s the thing.  If you’re lucky enough and fortunate enough and been blessed enough to be in the other 2 percent, the top 2 percent, you still get a tax cut for your first $250,000 of income.  All we’re saying is, after that, maybe you can do a little bit more to help pay down this deficit and invest in things like education that help our economy grow.  (Applause.)

And listen, government is going to do its part.  We’ve already cut a trillion dollars of savings — of spending.  We’re going to cut more.  We’ve got to streamline government and make it work efficiently and effectively.  But what we also can do is just ask folks like me to do a little bit more.  And all we’re asking is for folks like me to go back to the rates that we paid under Bill Clinton — and by the way, that was a time when we created nearly 23 million new jobs, and we created the biggest budget surplus in history.  (Applause.)  And here’s the kicker  — folks at the top actually did well because, guess what, when a factory worker or a construction worker or a receptionist or a teacher or a firefighter or a cop — when they’ve got a little more money in their pockets, what do they do?

AUDIENCE:  Spend it!

THE PRESIDENT:  Maybe they go out and buy a new car, after having been driving that old beater around for the last 15 years.  Maybe they finally get the new dishwasher because the old one has been broke for a long time.  Maybe they go buy a computer for their kid for the new school year, or they go to a restaurant, or heaven forbid, they take a vacation.  And that means businesses suddenly have more customers.  And then businesses start hiring more workers because they’re making more profit.  And everybody does better.  That’s how we grow the economy — not from the top down, but from the middle out, and from the bottom out.  (Applause.)

That’s the choice in this election.  And that’s why I’m running for a second term as President of the United States.  (Applause.)

You know, across the board, there is a sharp contrast between me and Mr. Romney.  When the auto industry was on the brink of collapse, more than a million jobs at stake, Governor Romney said, “let Detroit go bankrupt.”  I bet on American workers.  I bet on American manufacturing.  And three years later, the American auto industry has come roaring back.  (Applause.)  So now I want to make sure that high-tech manufacturing jobs are taking root here, not in China.  I want them to take root here in Council Bluffs.

Governor Romney, he likes to brag about his private sector experience.  A bunch of that private sector experience was investing in companies that have been called “pioneers” of outsourcing.  Let me tell you something — I want insourcing, not outsourcing.  (Applause.)  I want to stop giving tax breaks to companies that are shipping jobs overseas.  Let’s give tax breaks to companies that are investing here in the United States of America — (applause) — hiring American workers to make American products to sell around the world, stamped with those words:  Made in America.  That’s what I believe in.  (Applause.)

Here’s another difference.  Right now, homegrown energy, things like wind energy — creating new jobs all across the states like Iowa — and Governor Romney wants to end tax credits for wind energy producers.  America now produces twice as much electricity from wind as we did before I took office.  (Applause.)  We’ve doubled the amount of electricity we’re producing with wind.  The wind industry supports about 7,000 jobs in Iowa.  Without these wind energy tax credits, a whole lot of these jobs would be at risk — 37,000 jobs across this country would be at risk.

So I think we should stop spending billions on taxpayer subsidies for an oil industry that is making all kinds of profit, and let’s keep investing in the clean energy that’s never been more promising.  (Applause.)  That’s a disagreement I’ve got with Governor Romney.  That’s a choice in this election.

Back in 2008, I said it was time to end the war in Iraq — we ended it.  (Applause.)  I said it was time for us to go after bin Laden and al Qaeda — and we did.  (Applause.)  We’ve set a timeline to start bringing our troops out of Afghanistan, and so after a decade of war, I think it’s time to do some nation-building here at home.  (Applause.)

Now, we could not have accomplished any of this without the extraordinary service of our men and women in uniform.  (Applause.)  And I promise you this — as long as I am Commander-in-Chief, this country will care for our veterans and serve our veterans as well as they’ve served us.  (Applause.)  Nobody who has fought for this country should have to fight for a job or a roof over their heads when they come home.  That’s why we’ve invested so heavily in making sure that the VA is working the way it’s supposed to.  That’s why we’ve put more money into treatment of PTSD and traumatic brain injury; ending homelessness* among veterans.  But those are investments that we’ve got to make.

And my plan says let’s take half the money that we’re no longer spending on war and let’s also use it to put people back to work building our roads and our runways and our ports and our wireless networks — (applause) — and creating a Veterans Job Corps so local communities can hire our veterans to be firefighters and police officers in communities that need it. That’s the America that we want to build.  That’s the choice in this election.  That’s why I’m running for a second term.  (Applause.)

I want to make sure that America once again leads the world in educating our kids and training our workers.  I want to help our schools hire and reward the best teachers, especially in math and science.  I want to give two million more Americans the chance to go to community college and learn the skills that businesses are hiring for right now.  (Applause.)  And I want to get colleges and universities to bring down the cost of tuition once and for all — (applause) — because higher education is not a luxury; it’s an economic necessity in the 21st century.  Everybody should be able to afford it.  (Applause.)

I’ve got a plan to help homeowners refinance their homes at historically low rates — save an average of $3,000.  My opponent’s solution is to let the market bottom out.  That’s what he said.  That’s not a solution — that’s part of the problem.  That’s the difference in this election.

My opponent says one of the first things he’d do is repeal Obamacare.

AUDIENCE:  Booo —

THE PRESIDENT:  I think that part of being middle class in America is making sure you don’t go bankrupt when you get sick.  (Applause.)  That’s why, because of this law, if you’ve got a preexisting condition, you’ll be able to get health insurance.  (Applause.)  That’s why 6.5 million young people can now stay on their parent’s plan.  That’s why seniors are now getting discounts on their prescription drugs.  That’s why insurance companies can’t drop your coverage or impose lifetime limits when you need it most.  (Applause.)

It’s true — Obama does care.  That’s why we passed this bill.  (Applause.)  The Supreme Court has spoken.  We’re not going backward, we are going forward.  (Applause.)

All these things, whether it’s bringing back manufacturing, creating more construction jobs, protecting people’s health care, making sure your kids get the best education, making sure our veterans have the same kind of opportunity my grandfather had when he came back from World War II and was able to go to college on the GI Bill.  All these things are part of what makes up a middle-class life.  And they’re all bound together in that idea that made this country great — that basic promise that if you work hard, you can get ahead.

It’s not always going to be smooth.  There are going to be times where times are tough.  But the basic idea that if you work hard and look after your family, that work is going to be rewarded.  That’s the promise that our parents and grandparents passed down to us.  And now it’s the promise we’ve got to pass on to our kids and our grandkids.  That’s what’s at stake in this election.

And so, over the next three months, you are going to see the other side spend more money on negative ads than we’ve ever seen in history; and these folks, they’ve got some really rich people writing $10 million checks.  And basically, they’re going to say the same thing over and over again.  They know their economic theories aren’t going to sell, because folks remember when we tried them.  So all they’re going to say is the economy is not as good as it should and it’s Obama’s fault.  And they expect you to have amnesia and not remember who it is that got us into this mess.  (Applause.)  But they figure, if we run these ads often enough, maybe folks will start kind of thinking about it.  That is true.  (Laughter.)

So they may have a plan to win the election, but they can’t hide the fact that they don’t have a plan to create jobs or revive the middle class or grow the economy.  And I do have that plan.  (Applause.)  I’ve got a plan that puts you first.  (Applause.)  I’ve got a plan that puts middle-class families and folks striving to get into the middle class first.  (Applause.)

But I’m going to need your help.  I’m going to need your help.  I’ve got to make sure you’re registered.  I’ve got to make sure your friends are registered to vote.  In Iowa, you can get registered online.  All you have to do is go GottaRegister.com.  That’s g-o-t-t-a — gotta.  (Laughter.)  GottaRegister.com.

The thing is, we’ve been outspent before and we’ve been counted out before.  But what you taught me in 2007, 2008 was that when the American people cut through all the nonsense, when you focus your attention and you remember the story of your own families and all the struggles your parents and grandparents went through, and how maybe because you got a student loan somewhere, or maybe because your dad was able to get that job at the factory, you guys were able to build a good life together — just like Michelle and I were able to get opportunities that our parents could have never imagined.  When you focus on that thing that is best in America, the way we pull together and give everybody a fair shot, and everybody is doing their fair share, and everybody is playing by the same set of rules, and everybody is taking responsibility — when you come together and reaffirm those core values that make this the greatest country on Earth, you can’t be stopped.  All the money those folks are spending doesn’t matter.  You are our democracy.  You make decisions about the direction of this country.

And, Iowa, I’ve got to tell you, we’ve come too far to go back now.  (Applause.)  We’ve got too many good jobs we still have to create.  We’ve got too many teachers we’ve still got to hire.  We’ve got too many schools we still have to rebuild.  We’ve got too many students who still need help getting an affordable education.  We’ve got more homegrown energy we’ve got to generate.  We’ve got more troops we’ve got to bring home.  Most of all, we’ve got more doors of opportunity that we’ve got to open for everybody who’s willing to work hard enough to walk through those doors.

That is what is at stake in this election.  That is why I am running for President of the United States.  (Applause.)  That is why I’m asking for your vote — not just for me, but for this country that we believe in.  (Applause.)  And if you’re willing to work with me and stand with me, and knock on doors with me, and make phone calls with me — if you vote for me in November, we will win Iowa, we will win this election.  We’ll finish what we started in 2008.  And we’ll remind the world why the United States of America is the greatest nation on Earth.  (Applause.)

God bless you, and God bless the United States of America.

END
12:04 P.M. CDT

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