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Obama Honors Women in Weekly Address

US President Barack Obama delivers his weekly address, March 12, 2011

U.S. President Barack Obama has chosen Women's History Month to honor their achievements, and showcase legislation aimed at giving women equal pay.

During his weekly address Saturday, Obama said a new White House report on the status of women shows their earnings still lag behind men.

The president says the findings have inspired his resolve to get pay reforms legislation passed. Obama says in the current economy, fair pay is not just a women's issue, but a family issue.

The president noted that women are more likely than men to attend and graduate from college, yet women are more likely to live in poverty.

In the Republican address, Senator Lisa Murkowski said the rising gas prices are a by-product of the Obama administration's regulations on oil permits and drilling.

Senator Murkowski says her party supports new oil production in the U.S., and alternatives to raising taxes to reduce consumption.

On Friday, President Obama said he would tap into the country's oil reserve only if there is a shortage due to disruptions in the Middle East. But he says that action is not necessary right now.

Some information for this report was provided by AP, AFP and Reuters.