Obama to talk about economy at Illinois college
July 21st, 2013
08:00 PM ET
1 year ago

Obama to talk about economy at Illinois college

(CNN) – President Barack Obama will hit the road again to talk about jobs and the economy, resetting the message amid a busy summer that's so far been dominated by immigration reform efforts, the IRS scandal, national security leaks and the president's trips to Europe and Africa.

Obama will return to Knox College in Galesburg, Illinois on Wednesday to kick off a series of speeches about his economic plan, White House senior adviser Dan Pfeiffer wrote in an e-mail to supporters Sunday evening.

The president will also visit Warrensburg, Missouri, on Wednesday and travel to Jacksonville, Florida, the following day to speak again on the country's economic conditions. During additional stops in the coming weeks, Pfeiffer wrote Obama will touch on jobs, education, health care and retirement, including "new ideas and new pushes for ideas he has discussed before."

"He'll talk about the progress we've made together, the challenges that remain, and the path forward," Pfeiffer wrote in the e-mail, referring to the Knox College speech.

According to a White House official, the road show will wrap up before Washington faces another debt ceiling deadline around the end of September. Wednesday’s speech will also include mention of the economic case for immigration reform, the official confirmed.

The e-mail included a link to a video that harkens back to Obama's 2005 speech at Knox College–not long after Obama was elected U.S. senator–when the White House says Obama gave his first major address about his economic ideas.

"It’s been the creation of a massive middle class, through decent wages and benefits and public schools, that allowed us all to prosper," he said at the time. "It depended on a belief in the free market, but it also depended on our sense of mutual regard for each other."

The video splices together quotes from some of the president's economic-themed speeches since then, including many familiar refrains that focus on the middle class.

Polls indicate that the economy remains the top issue on the minds of Americans.

"The economy, and the things we can do to help it grow and strengthen and secure and expand the middle class, has been, is and will be the central focus of the president's domestic policy," White House press secretary Jay Carney said on Friday.

In late May and early June, Obama held events about jobs in Baltimore, Maryland; Austin, Texas; and Charlotte, North Carolina. The White House touts the growth of 7.2 million private-sector jobs in the last 40 months and an unemployment level that has dropped to 7.6% from its peak of 10% in October 2009.

Republicans, however, argue the president is pursuing the wrong economic policies, citing the still relatively high unemployment rate as an example. The president's first step, many have argued in recent weeks, should be repealing Obamacare, a program they consider detrimental to job creation.

Their argument was further bolstered earlier this month when the White House announced it would delay a key provision of the program that requires employers to provide health insurance. House Republicans passed a bill last week requiring the Obama administration to delay the provision that requires individuals to get health insurance or face a penalty.

– CNN’s Adam Aigner-Treworgy, Jessica Yellin, Paul Steinhauser and Ashley Killough contributed to this report.


Filed under: Economy • Jobs • President Obama
soundoff (333 Responses)
  1. Jimmie Russells

    Obama is finally done trashing up race relations, giving African nations billions to line the pockets of their dictators, and rambling about how we need to reduce nuclear weapons stockpiles?

    July 21, 2013 08:21 pm at 8:21 pm |
  2. Yermom

    Maybe he should focus on the NSA, and maybe answer some questions about it.

    July 21, 2013 08:21 pm at 8:21 pm |
  3. james fryday

    That's great. The economy is what it's all about.

    July 21, 2013 08:21 pm at 8:21 pm |
  4. 我们一定要解放台湾

    To preserve American people's LAST REMAINING jobs, we must strangle HTC, before the industry collapses like car industry.

    July 21, 2013 08:21 pm at 8:21 pm |
  5. Free Man in the Republic of Texas

    Obama refocusing on economy...

    IF "I" had a city it would look like DETROIT !!!

    FORWARD >>> >>> >>> >>> >>> >>>
    ALL of america can be like DETROIT !!!

    PUBLIC UNIONS FOREVER !!!

    July 21, 2013 08:21 pm at 8:21 pm |
  6. Alina77

    The economy is doing Ok, my husband just received high paid job in Seattle... I am voting "democrat" again... Thanks.

    July 21, 2013 08:21 pm at 8:21 pm |
  7. Mr. Bigg

    Obama, you are the man! Never give up hope on unifying the country. At least you are trying to unify everyone for the greater cause of lifting the economy. Unfortunately, a President is only as strong as his party is. And the Democrats need to stand behind their party and help recruit Republicans to this cause.

    July 21, 2013 08:22 pm at 8:22 pm |
  8. Natch

    Wouldn't he have had to have EVER focused on the economy, in order to be REfocusing on it now?? Just sayin.....

    July 21, 2013 08:23 pm at 8:23 pm |
  9. Thatsit121

    He sure does talk a lot. Actions speak louder than words Mr. President.

    July 21, 2013 08:23 pm at 8:23 pm |
  10. Metron

    He's going to tell us all that we can now get 2 part time jobs instead of 1 full time job. Congrats! Fantastic economy.

    July 21, 2013 08:24 pm at 8:24 pm |
  11. finally

    NOW he's gonna focus on the economy ? What a joke !

    July 21, 2013 08:25 pm at 8:25 pm |
  12. chuck

    Focus...as the president once again is focusing on the economy and jobs, so should the do nothing Republicans in Congress... if they value their jobs and they do they better get in line or face early retirement. ..

    July 21, 2013 08:25 pm at 8:25 pm |
  13. Ancient Texan

    The unemployment rate drops from 10% to 7.5% because people gave up and quit looking for work. There are fewer people working now than in 1979 and the true unemployment number is more in the range of 15%. RE-focus? he's never focused the first time.

    July 21, 2013 08:25 pm at 8:25 pm |
  14. Is_This_A_Joke ?

    This was the issue in 2008...too little...too late...hope that the next President can change that...

    July 21, 2013 08:26 pm at 8:26 pm |
  15. Bjorn Bjornsen

    Imagine that ... and it only took him 5 years to do it. In another 5 he might actually get from talking about the economy to actually doing something about it ... unless that pesky Constitution of the United States gets in his way.

    July 21, 2013 08:26 pm at 8:26 pm |
  16. paulwithers

    Is this a joke?

    July 21, 2013 08:28 pm at 8:28 pm |
  17. Mike

    JUST GREAT: Obama is going to "talk" about the economy. Just like in his first term, he's real "serious" about the economy and will give a great speech! He established an economic job council and guess how many times he met with them? ONCE! Serious about the economy?? A leader??? Fail.

    July 21, 2013 08:29 pm at 8:29 pm |
  18. guest

    Heard this one before....

    July 21, 2013 08:29 pm at 8:29 pm |
  19. Tigas

    Wow! After 10 months of fails, controversies, and distractions in Term 2:
    – Benghazi
    – Gay marriage
    – IRS political targeting
    – Gun Control
    – NSA targeting reporters
    – Collecting Millions in Fundraising
    – Illegal immigrant Amnesty
    – Vacation
    – Complaining and blaming others for his Sequester
    – NSA targeting US citizens
    – $7 billion pledged to Africa
    – Supporting and aiding the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt
    – pissing off all of our overseas friends and allies
    – fanning the flames of racial divide

    ... Obama finally addresses the economy

    July 21, 2013 08:29 pm at 8:29 pm |
  20. Addison

    Seriously? Is this a story CNN puts up about every 6 months? Do you guys ever do any critical reporting.. ask some hard questions. Obama has said this 12 times in 5 years.. and we always get something that hurts the economy. Now I am seriously scared it is going to get worse.

    July 21, 2013 08:29 pm at 8:29 pm |
  21. Kelly51

    No mention of the Trayvon case he's been focused on. Hummm I guess not to many Americans are listening to his rhetoric. Refocusing? LOL

    July 21, 2013 08:29 pm at 8:29 pm |
  22. TimeforChange

    Detroit... It's all I have to say.

    July 21, 2013 08:31 pm at 8:31 pm |
  23. Hack

    His term is over. 2014 he will not have the senate and he will only be able to veto.

    July 21, 2013 08:31 pm at 8:31 pm |
  24. Charlie

    Please Obama, just stay on vacation. The less you do the better it is for hard working taxpaying citizens.

    July 21, 2013 08:32 pm at 8:32 pm |
  25. Bill

    He can talk all he wants, but the public has given up on him. He has done nothing for the economy and will probably go down in history as the worst President ever. I knew he was a backstabber the minute he agreed to cut Social security benefits.

    July 21, 2013 08:32 pm at 8:32 pm |
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