News / USA

Obama Uses Midwest Trip to Promote Job Creation for Veterans

Obama speaks in US state of Minnesota, Jun 1, 2012Obama speaks in US state of Minnesota, Jun 1, 2012
x
Obama speaks in US state of Minnesota, Jun 1, 2012
Obama speaks in US state of Minnesota, Jun 1, 2012
WHITE HOUSE - President Barack Obama traveled to the midwestern state of Minnesota on Friday, to urge public pressure on Congress to pass legislation to create a new jobs program for returning U.S. military veterans.

Obama has paid a lot of attention to Minnesota, making several visits to the state which was part of a three-day bus tour of the Midwest last year to promote his economic policies.

He enjoys strong support in Minnesota, which he won in 2008.  Public opinion polls currently give him a lead there over Mitt Romney, who has clinched enough delegates for the 2012 Republican presidential nomination.

On Friday, Obama toured the Honeywell factory in Golden Valley, Minnesota using it as a backdrop for his latest appeal to Congress to pass legislation he has proposed to help the economy.

Obama proposed creation of a Veterans Jobs Corps to assist military veterans returning after service overseas, saying the nation needs to translate words of appreciation for members of the military, into action.

"I want all of our service members and veterans to know we are forever grateful for your service and your sacrifice.  Just like you fought for us, we will keep fighting for you, for more jobs, more security, for the opportunity to keep your family strong, because you will help us keep America on top in the 21st century," Obama said.

Obama announced a plan to create partnerships between the U.S. military and manufacturing industry groups to make it easier for companies to hire returning service members with skills, and a Pentagon task force to help veterans gain needed certifications.

Obama's remarks were part of his campaign to promote his "to do list" for Congress to stimulate job creation.  

He also mentioned the latest monthly jobs report which showed that only 69,000 jobs were added to the economy in the month of May, raising the unemployment rate slightly to 8.2 percent.

Twice, Obama mentioned the worrying fiscal picture in Europe, and said U.S. congressional action on his proposals would help insulate the United States from potential new economic shocks.

While Congress passed a few parts of a major jobs bill he proposed last year, Obama said there is no excuse for lawmakers failing to act on other proposals.

"Now is not the time to play politics, now is not the time to sit on your hands.  The American people expect their leaders to work hard no matter what year it is.  The economy still isn't where it needs to be, there are steps that could make a difference right now, steps that can also serve as a buffer in case the situation in Europe gets any worse," Obama said.

The White House said the latest jobs figures show the economy is still not growing fast enough, but emphasized that the economy has added private sector jobs for 27 straight months.

Republican leaders in Congress called the May figures more proof of President Obama's "failed policies", noting unemployment has remained above 8 percent.

Meanwhile, Mitt Romney continued his attacks on Obama economic polices, during an appearance at the former California headquarters of Solyndra, a solar energy company that went bankrupt after receiving a $535 million loan guarantee supported by the Obama economic stimulus of 2009.

Romney called Solyndra an example of Obama's thinking "that government-dominated decisions" make America stronger, and repeated allegations that the Obama had a serious conflict of interest in supporting the company.

You May Like

Video Analysts: Beijing Parade a 'Bazaar' of Stolen Technology

Show commemorating victory over Japan in World War II involved long, medium and short range missiles, a range of tanks and 200 fighter aircraft More

Bernie Sanders Surge Reflects US Shift on Socialism

Although most analysts say it is unlikely he will get the Democratic nomination, Sanders' campaign opens up questions and issues that are otherwise marginalized More

Video On IS Frontline, Kurdish Fighters Ready for Offensive

Peshmerga soldiers say although they need more heavy artillery, they are poised to take the fight to the Islamic State extremists on their turf More

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Drowned Migrant Toddler Photo Triggers European Outragei
X
Henry Ridgwell
September 04, 2015 11:36 AM
The harrowing picture of a drowned three-year-old Syrian boy washed up on a Turkish beach appears to have galvanized Europe’s leaders into doing more to address the refugee crisis. France, Germany and Italy issued a joint call Thursday for compulsory quotas of refugees for all EU states. But there were chaotic scenes in Hungary as police tried to force migrants off a train heading for Austria. Henry Ridgwell has more. And a caution, some of the images in this report may be disturbing.
Video

Video Drowned Migrant Toddler Photo Triggers European Outrage

The harrowing picture of a drowned three-year-old Syrian boy washed up on a Turkish beach appears to have galvanized Europe’s leaders into doing more to address the refugee crisis. France, Germany and Italy issued a joint call Thursday for compulsory quotas of refugees for all EU states. But there were chaotic scenes in Hungary as police tried to force migrants off a train heading for Austria. Henry Ridgwell has more. And a caution, some of the images in this report may be disturbing.
Video

Video Russians Observe 11th Anniversary of Beslan School Attack

This week, Russians have been observing the 11th anniversary of the attack by Islamic militants on a school in Russia's North Caucasus region that killed more than 330 hostages, including 186 children. The three-day siege and massacre that started on September 1, 2004 took place in Beslan, a town in the republic of North Ossetia, and is one of the bloodiest terrorist acts ever in Russia. VOA's Mike Richman reports.
Video

Video Native Americans Debate: Father Serra, Saint or Sinner?

Pope Francis will canonize an 18th century missionary to Spanish California during a papal visit to the United States this month.  But some Native Americans have criticized the elevation to sainthood of the missionary priest, Junipero Serra. VOA's Mike O’Sullivan has more from Los Angeles.
Video

Video Calais School Offers Another Face of Europe’s Migrant Crisis

Europe is facing mounting criticism over how it’s handling its biggest migration crisis since World War II. But not all Europeans believe building walls or passing repressive policies are the answer. A school for migrants in the French port city of Calais, is opening doors and building bonds across nationalities. VOA's Lisa Bryant reports.
Video

Video Kurdish Fighters on IS Frontline Ready for Offensive

Finger on the trigger, the Kurdish Peshmerga soldier stared across the dust at a village taken over by Islamic State extremists. The Kurdistan’s Khazir frontline, just 45 minutes from the Islamic State stronghold of Mosul. And at this point, the militants were less than two kilometers away. VOA's Sharon Behn reports.
Video

Video China Announces Troop Cuts at WWII Parade

Chinese President Xi Jinping Thursday announced plans to cut the world’s largest military force by 300,000 troops. The announcement was made during a massive military parade to commemorate victory over Japan in World War II. The event was shunned by most Western leaders and for some is raising fresh concerns about China’s military ambitions. VOA’s Bill Ide has more from Beijing.
Video

Video Russia-Japan Relations Cool as Putin Visits China for WWII Anniversary

Russian President Vladimir Putin is in Beijing for commemorations of the 70th anniversary of China's WWII victory over Japan. Putin is expected to visit Japan later this year, but tensions between Tokyo and Moscow over islands disputed since the war, and sanctions over Ukraine, could pour cold water on the plan. VOA's Daniel Schearf reports.
Video

Video Yemen ‘on Brink of Disaster’ as Medical Shortages Soar

Aid agencies warn Yemen is on the brink of humanitarian disaster – with up to half a million children facing severe malnutrition, and hospitals running out of basic medicines. There are fears Yemen's civil war could escalate as the coalition led by Saudi Arabia tries to drive back Houthi rebels, who seized control of much of the country earlier this year. Henry Ridgwell reports.
Video

Video Apps Helping Kenyan Businesses Stay Ahead of Counterfeiters

Counterfeit goods in Kenya cost the government as much as $1 billion each year in lost tax revenues. The fake goods also hurt entrepreneurs who find it hard to carve out a niche in the market and retain customers. But as Lenny Ruvaga reports from Nairobi, information technology is being used to try to beat the problem.
Video

Video Nobel Prize Winner Malala Talks to VOA

Nobel Peace Prize winner Malala Yousafzai met with VOA's Deewa service in Washington Sunday to talk about women’s rights and unveil a trailer for her new documentary. VOA's Katherine Gypson has more.
Video

Video War, Drought Threaten Iraq's Marshlands

Iraq's southern wetlands are in crisis. These areas are the spawning ground for Gulf fisheries, a resting place for migrating wildfowl, and source of livelihood for fishermen and herders. Faith Lapidus has more.
Video

Video Colombians Flee Venezuela as Border Crisis Escalates

Hundreds of Colombians have fled Venezuela since last week, amid an escalating border crisis between the two countries. Last week, Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro ordered the closure of a key border crossing after smugglers injured three Venezuelan soldiers and a civilian. The president also ordered the deportation of Colombians who are in Venezuela illegally. Zlatica Hoke reports.
Video

Video Rebuilding New Orleans' Music Scene

Ten years after Hurricane Katrina inundated New Orleans, threatening to wash away its vibrant musical heritage along with its neighborhoods, the beat goes on. As Bronwyn Benito and Faith Lapidus report, a Musicians' Village is preserving the city's unique sound.
Video

Video In Russia, Auto Industry in Tailspin

Industry insiders say country relies too heavily on imports as inflation cuts too many consumers out of the market. Daniel Schearf has more from Moscow.
Video

Video Scientist Calls Use of Fetal Tissue in Medical Research Essential

An anti-abortion group responsible for secret recordings of workers at a women's health care organization claims the workers shown are offering baby parts for sale, a charge the organization strongly denies. While the selling of fetal tissue is against the law in the United States, abortion and the use of donated fetal tissue for medical research are both legal. VOA’s Julie Taboh reports.

VOA Blogs