Climate Change: How Far Will Obama Go?

White House Press Secretary Jay Carney says the president's position has not changed.
5:07 | 01/22/13

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Transcript for Climate Change: How Far Will Obama Go?
-- performing at the -- extension on the debt ceiling does the president encourage members of the house to vote for that bill. And will he sign it wouldn't be -- -- what's the bill. As I said the bill still has to overcome some concerns. Expressed by members of the house and senate before -- -- both chambers and reach the president's desk. If it does it reaches the president's desk he would not stand in the way. Of the bill becoming law. Broadly speaking I would point to what I said the top which is that the president's position is. We have to remove. These. Damaging fights over. -- filling our obligations to pay -- bills. From the process. What we have to remove him entirely because that there's there's so helpful to economic growth is so helpful to the middle class. They create terrible uncertainty for our businesses we can continue to. Engage and we will with members of congress over the need to further reduce our deficit -- balance when the president has put forward plans as you know that. Demonstrate. The fact that he is willing to compromise. That he is willing to meet meet Republicans. Halfway on these issues and -- continues to do a book that debt ceiling. Meets the needs to not be a part of that because it's it's just it's it's. Terrible for the economy and its and it seems also to be bad politics -- He helped me understand specifically. What the president wants to pursue in the second. For this disease is this something here to get legislation he would like to see congress pass -- pass cap and trade what and what specifically does he want to do. He didn't even for I think the president has long supported. Congressional action on climate change and while it's clear that bipartisan opposition to legislative action is still a reality the president position remains the same as it wasn't personal. He looks forward to building on. The achievements. Made in the first. And and he looks at this in -- in in in a Broadway because. This is an. -- deficit reduction for example is not a -- unto itself which we pursue it in a way that helps our economy grow and helps to create jobs otherwise. Is not worth the effort in his mind. The -- climate change is not. You don't pursue. Action that helps deal with that problem just because of the problem itself but because they're huge opportunities there. In alternative energy and we do. Whether. Anyone. In Washington or elsewhere likes it or not clean energy technology is going to be a huge part of 21 century global economy. We can make choices now that ensure that those industries. Our domestic that we that we dominate those fields. -- endeavor and we create the jobs associated with those industries here in America or we can substitute our dependence on foreign oil. -- dependence on. Imports of clean energy technology so that presently that would be shortsighted so you know he looks at this -- -- more holistic way -- it's and he will move forward. In implementing some of the actions that. He took in the first term and in building on the progress that was made in the first. He dedicated. War that's been climbing -- and -- others it all here. I -- I would encourage everyone who looks the speech not to -- to break it apart because we view. The inaugural address the president -- inaugural -- and the speech you'll give to congress. On February 12 the State of the Union Address as part of a package has two parts of the package and as it has been tradition. And attrition the president is keeping. The inaugural address -- tend to be about. The president's vision -- certainly was the case yesterday about how we move forward together as a country the policy specifics and you know I think. But for those who do this in Washington -- number of words dedicated each issue in which position they achieve in the address. Probably discourage you from doing that after he gets the state of the union but it's more appropriate for an address like that but why couldn't get such a prominent focus in this speech and such a relatively narrow focus. If -- all in the campaign what I. I contests that assertion because in fact he raised the challenge of climate change frequently. In the campaign he talked about it in press conferences in recent press conferences as well as. When when asked about it he addressed -- is commitments -- to dealing with this challenge. And and the impact it has on our economy and our people so. I -- it's an important issue is a priority. But -- it is not. A singular priority it is one -- the host of priorities that he believes we can act on if we work together. He wants. It's hired him. Client. Yeah I would refer you to the ad -- site. Decided early on in that process not the view every that was broadcast because. Who would have the time so -- I can't remember but it was certainly an issue that he talked about frequently on the campaign trail and you know it's it's one that he believes is a priority.

This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.

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