Oskaloosa.com

Local News

August 14, 2012

Obama champions middle class in Oskaloosa speech

OSKALOOSA — President Barack Obama told the audience at his campaign stop in Oskaloosa Tuesday that they have a critical choice to make at the polls this November.

“It is a choice between two fundamentally different visions of how America became great and how it’s going to stay great,” Obama said to 852-person audience gathered underneath shade trees at Nelson Pioneer Farm just outside Oskaloosa.

Four years ago, Obama faced many challenges when he took office.

“We fought two wars on a credit card,” he said. Also, the country was undergoing the “worst financial crisis since the Great Depression.”

Obama said there are no quick fixes for such problems; however, America has the means to come back.

“We have the best workers in the world. We have the best entrepreneurs in the world. We have the best farmers in the world. We have the best scientists, the best researchers,” he said.

Although Obama spoke at a pioneer farm museum celebrating Iowa’s 19th century heritage, a main tenant of his message was about 21st century high technology — wind energy.

Republican Mitt Romney has stated he would let the Wind Energy Tax Credit, which is due for renewal soon, to expire. Obama wants to keep the tax credit.

“And at a moment when homegrown energy is creating new jobs in states like Iowa, my opponent wants to end tax credits for wind energy producers. He’s said new sources of energy like these are ‘imaginary.’ His running mate calls them a ‘fad.’ During a speech a few months ago, Governor Romney even explained his energy policy this way: ‘You can’t drive a car with a windmill on it.’ That’s what he said about wind power. ‘You can’t drive a car with a windmill on it.’

 “I wonder if he actually tried that. That’s something I would have liked to see. But if he really wants to learn something about wind energy, Iowa, all he has to do  is pay attention to what you’ve been doing.

“If he knew what you’ve been doing, he’d see that in places like Newton, where a few years ago, a Maytag plant shut down and jobs dried up; folks are now back to work manufacturing enormous new towers and blades for some of the most high-tech wind turbines on the planet. The wind industry now supports about 7,000 jobs in this state, and 75,000 jobs across the country. These jobs aren’t a fad — they’re good jobs and sources of pride we need to fight for.

If he knew what you’ve been doing, he’d know we used to have to import most of the parts like these. Today they’re made in Iowa, and made in America, by American workers. That’s not imaginary — that’s real. And that’s what we’re fighting for in this election.”

Obama also said he’s fighting to protect the middle class.

He contends that the centerpiece of Romney’s economic strategy is to give a $5 trillion tax cut on top of the Bush-era tax cuts. In comparison, Obama said the U.S. defense budget is only a half trillion dollars per year.

Obama said the country has heard that “trickle down fairy dust” before in 2001. Then, the country had a trillion dollar deficit.

Obama said what is needed is tax relief for the middle class. Obama said he has cut taxes for a typical Iowa family by $3,600. He also wants to keep the tax rates the same for the first $250,000 of income and set a higher rate for sums above that.

Rather than “trickle down economics,” which is a top-down cycle, Obama said he believes prosperity can be achieved from “the middle class out” and from “the bottom up.”

Obama also defended his health care reform program, which the U.S. Supreme Court recently ratified.

The Romney camp says “let’s get rid of ‘Obamacare.’”

Obama said his health care reform program benefits working families.

“In a country as rich as ours, no one should go bankrupt if you get sick,” Obama said.

About 6 million young people can stay on their parents’ health insurance plan. People do not have to fear their coverage being dropped by insurance companies for pre-existing conditions, Obama said.

“We’re not going backwards and refight the fights from three years ago,” Obama said. “We’re going forwards, we’re not going backwards.”

Obama also touched on a number of issues.

For the nation’s veterans, he wants to serve them as well as they have served their country.

He wants to take money saved from ending the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan and “do some nation-building at home” to create jobs to rebuild the nation’s infrastructure. Obama also wants to set up a Veterans Job Corps to help them find employment.

On the topic of education, Obama said a higher education “is not a luxury, it is an economic necessity.” He wants to make college more affordable for “every single young person in America” with lower tuition at colleges and universities.

Obama warned the audience that they will get bombarded with TVs against Obama’s programs. He said the negative ad campaign may be a way to win an election, but it’s not a plan to create jobs.

“They don’t have that plan. I do have that plan,” Obama said.

Obama said he learned something from Iowans in 2008.

“When you get involved, you can’t be stopped,” Obama said.

At the end of his speech, the crowd gave the president a standing ovation.

Herald Editor Duane Nollen can be reached by email at oskynews@oskyherald.com

1
Text Only
Local News
  • North Mahaska Jazz North Mahaska Jazz Band are Class 1A state jazz champions

    April 19, 2014 1 Photo

  • Herman Simons obit photo HERMAN SIMONS DEC. 16, 1924 -- APRIL 18, 2014 OSKALOOSA — Herman M. Simons, 89, of Oskaloosa, died Friday, April 18, 2014, at the Mahaska Hospital in Oskaloosa. He was born Tuesday, Dec. 16, 1924, in Tainter, the son of Paul Johanna Ryken Simons. He attended Greeley Country School. On May 1, 194

    April 19, 2014 1 Photo

  • DOT photo Public learns latest about Northwest Bypass at DOT meeting OSKALOOSA -- Many area residents learned the latest about the U.S. 63 Northwest Bypass of Oskaloosa at a public information meeting held Wednesday evening at Oskaloosa Middle School. The two-hour meeting featured tables with maps of the three propose

    April 18, 2014 1 Photo

  • Windmill photo Windmill undergoes restoration OSKALOOSA -- The Mahaska County Historical Society is pleased to announce that the Mahaska County Iowa Farm Bureau Federation is funding the restoration of the Baker/Gilchrist Windmill. The Baker windmill at Oskaloosa's Nelson Pioneer Farm and Museu

    April 17, 2014 1 Photo

  • Women's Club photo Oskaloosa Women's ClubSpring Luncheon set for April 25 OSKALOOSA -- The annual Oskaloosa Women's Club Spring Luncheon will be held on Friday, April 25, at noon at the First Presbyterian Church. All local talent is appearing for the program. Performing will be the men's quartet from the Central United Met

    April 17, 2014 1 Photo

  • Alcohol, prom, graduation don't mix DES MOINES -- April is Alcohol Awareness Month and marks the beginning of the prom and graduation season, a time when the spotlight turns to celebrations that can lead to underage drinking. The Iowa Alcoholic Beverages Division is encouraging retail

    April 17, 2014

  • Artifact 4-17 Do you know what this is?

    April 16, 2014 1 Photo

  • Blue Zones photo 2 Blue Zones kicks off OSKALOOSA -- Blue Zones Project held its Oskaloosa Kickoff Monday evening at the Oskaloosa High School gym to help improve the community's health. Blue Zones originated with Dan Buettner of National Geographic. He was asked to find areas of the world

    April 15, 2014 2 Photos

  • Motorist dies in one-vehicle accident Sunday

    April 14, 2014

  • Special Olympics photo 1 Oskaloosa hosts Special Olympics spring games OSKALOOSA -- About 250 athletes from around southeast Iowa gathered at the William Penn University Penn Activities Center Saturday to compete in the Special Olympics. Athletes tested their mettle in a variety of track and field events at the Special

    April 13, 2014 2 Photos

Obituaries
Oskaloosa Shopper
Facebook
Hyperlocal Search
Premier Guide
Find a business

Walking Fingers
Maps, Menus, Store hours, Coupons, and more...
Premier Guide
Parade
Magazine

Click HERE to read all your Parade favorites including Hollywood Wire, Celebrity interviews and photo galleries, Food recipes and cooking tips, Games and lots more.
Photo reprints