Obama at Ford Factory Discusses Helping the American Worker

The president gives remarks on the American economy, auto industry at Kansas City Ford plant.
37:49 | 09/20/13

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Transcript for Obama at Ford Factory Discusses Helping the American Worker
This is a special group. Report from NBC news. Look what I'm -- that's arguably the CBC news digital special report President Obama taking a bit of a victory lap. He is at a Ford auto plants. In Kansas City, Missouri five years 2008 collapse. And bailouts of Chrysler and General Motors. The president now addresses in the auto workers there. Let's listen in and applause. Let's say about about Jordan third generation. -- employee. She's going to schooled -- in the wake. Works of the plant on the weekends. -- hundred degree in business management and will be. Taking Allen's place running the company. I don't know. Limited a few years but. But we're so proud burned and congratulations. To everything. Everything she represents. You know when you see young people like -- -- organs are making -- themselves. And routed the community like this what really makes you proud so before it gets older couple other folks -- -- want to introduce the working for today and now. First -- -- Your outstanding governor Jay Nixon. His wife. Plant might not a better. For the great work and and that's. Outstanding secretary of health and human services former governor -- canvas -- She eventually -- -- because her son and his fiancee are here. But we're glad she's here. One of my. Greatest friends and just. A tough. It's Smart. Dedicated public servant. Senator -- -- -- -- -- Your former mayor. Preacher. -- -- Kansas city's -- agendas there. -- -- -- And in the Mair. Right -- liberty. -- -- And his lovely wife -- -- world. -- -- -- -- -- flood in Kansas City to see. -- incredible success story and action. I did not think I was going to be talking about the cheeks. Get carried away I just want to point out. The bears are too and -- And were actually able to pass more than. Ten yards. Not just a little trash talking. -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- I want to give special thanks to Ford's CEO. -- one of our outstanding business leaders. Has helped to lead forward to be the number one. Auto maker -- In the United States of America Alamo like aliens here. -- -- if you don't have outstanding workers and the president of local 249. Jump right. Launch manager. -- are now asking I really like because he -- -- bears -- Sox fan. And I'm very much appreciated -- and some other folks showing me around. This new stamping plant. Right here. Now. You may not be aware of this blood you would I have a little history together. -- -- role. In at a Cadillac these days. -- I'm just I'm -- and -- like my house. -- -- -- About three and a half years. But before that. I was driving around in the 2008 -- state. Came -- these assembly lines. -- might have been involved in building -- here was a great car. Problem is. I got Secret Service about a month after I bought the car. Suddenly you have 2000 mile long. And it isn't -- Commission. -- I say thank you for her bill -- my car. But also came here to talk about what's going to be the number one priority. In this country. And that is growing. Our economy creating new jobs. And making sure that everyone who works hard in America has a chance to get ahead. Some remember -- Ago. A financial crisis that Wall Street. And then turned into a devastating. Recession on main street. And it came close to being another Great Depression. By the time I took office the economy was shrinking. At a rate of 8% a year. Unprecedented. Our businesses were shedding 800000. Jobs a month. And you -- this perfect storm. And millions of Americans lost their jobs their homes their savings they've been -- of a lifetime to get. But what the recession also showed was. The fact that for decades. Middle class families. Have been working harder and harder just to get my hands seen their incomes go up tensing their wages go -- Manufacturing was moving overseas. And so. What build our middle class. Had been buckled. Had been weakened. And I think if you ask most Americans win. The economic crisis if they might not dated Lehman's Brothers collapsing their big talk -- about. When they got a pink -- that they didn't expect or. The banks -- whether home or they didn't have health insurance. Or maybe they were told plant was shut down in the assembly line was going quiet. Those are tough times. Five years ago plans like this when we're closing the doors. And the -- -- stepped in the Oval Office the American auto industry which is the heartbeat of American manufacturers. The auto industry was flat line. Sure we're standing on its own two feet and made some Smart decisions but. -- we'll tell -- GM and Chrysler had gone down. Suppliers would go down dealers were gone down and all of that went ahead. A profound impact on four. Our refusal of that. So we -- -- labor -- -- with management everybody had to make some sacrifices everybody put some skin in the game. We met on the American worker we bet on -- and today that bet has paid off because the American auto. -- -- -- -- -- -- Hiring new workers. And building more cars are building better cars better -- -- -- what's going on right here the plant. The new home at 150 is built -- the never more fuel efficient than ever. -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- A third shift -- -- -- workers just gave up with the man. Because foreign invested one point one billion dollars in -- plan. Pretty soon 11100. More workers will be joining you on the assembly lines in good union job. -- -- -- -- Building cars that means more just for suppliers. Means more jobs for distributors. It means more jobs for. -- that the folks who on the restaurant. Here in town. -- -- -- Depending on. It has an impact on your tax -- Has an impact on the teacher who -- your kids. The first responder -- can't just say. All those. People are impacted by your success. And that fundamental idea. Everybody is doing what went when. When some of us are going well it's okay. But what everybody's got a state that's when things really start Roland. That's at the heart of every decision I've made a president because when the middle class does better we all knew. So and the depth of the crisis we passed a Recovery Act. To make sure that we put -- floor. Below which this country couldn't fall would put money -- pockets with tax breaks. We made sure the people rebuilding roads and bridges keeping things going helping to keep teachers and firefighters and cops on the job. Today three -- add years later our business is -- seven -- Half million new jobs. -- and a half million new jobs. We help. Responsible homeowners stay in their homes. 11 of the biggest elements of history on behalf people who would wrongfully lost their homes -- banks have done things right today our housing market -- -- We took we took on -- tax code that was too skewed toward the wealthy. We get tax. -- want -- -- for 90% of families we ask those in the top 2% pay a little bit more today middle class tax rates are near an all time low. The deficits are -- of the fastest rate since World War II. That's what we did. We invest -- -- American technologies to end our addiction to foreign oil. Today -- work generating more renewable energy than ever before. Produce more natural gas than anybody in the world. We're about to produce more -- our oil that we buy from overseas. For the first time in nearly twenty years. We've still got a broken health care system. Been locked out. The insurance market are finally. Americans who are currently uninsured. Six out of those -- -- -- -- -- -- covered for less than a hundred dollars a month. Less than your cellphone bill. So we've been working. This like you've been working over the last four -- -- cleared away the rubble from the crisis we've started laying new foundation for economic growth new foundation for -- -- And nobody here we all had to make some adjustments I'm assuming some folks have to tighten their belts. Get rid -- -- that. Focus on things that really matter. Cut out some things you didn't -- We've shown the world that the American people are tough and resilient. And they -- tougher than. Ford trucks. To let the good news and. Any working person -- -- middle class family they'll tell you we're not get what we need to make. The economy. And is -- but it needs to grow faster. We're producing jobs but we need to create more jobs and more good paying jobs. We've got make sure there were rebuilding an economy that doesn't work from the top down works from the middle out. The gives ladders of opportunity to folks who still don't have a job. Got to make sure that. Workers are sharing in. Broke -- productivity. Right now. These are creating jobs the top 1% took home 20% of the nation's income last year the average worker. -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- So in many ways the trends that have taken hold over the past few years. A winner take all economy. Few folks in the top doing better and better and better everybody else tread water we're losing ground. But that's not a model that we want and it's been made worse by this recession. So what I've been -- over the last couple months I've been visiting sounds like liberty. Traveled all across the country talking about what we need to do to reverse those -- make sure we've got a better bargain poor middle class America. Good jobs that pay good wages and education in the -- our -- for -- global economy. A home that is secure affordable health care that there is there when you get sick a secure retirement even if you're not rich. All those things. Then -- for. A secure life. Seek to raise your kids. And and have confidence that they're gonna do better than you do. That's what I'm focused on. That's what you're focused on. That's what. -- should be focused on. Of the current situation. -- it's a little bit about what's going around. -- -- -- Right now congress is in the middle of -- budget debate now there's nothing new about that. You know every year congress got to pass a budget. It's always -- contentious. Process. But right now our recovery is still needs to build more strength so it's it's important. That we get a right in Washington. Because even though our -- the country is ultimately gonna depend on great businesslike -- hard workers like you. Government have to do some things. It was have to pass -- budget. To make sure our education system works and prepares our kids. And -- worker's -- the global economy. If we're gonna rebuild our roads our bridges our airports are ports. Government's got to be involved in that. If we're gonna have scientific research and development look at all these newfangled -- equipment here. Some of the things been allowed. The efficiencies of this plant originated. In laboratories. Scientists. Doing work on the government's done that's how we always maintain our cutting edge. These are things that help us -- these are hell they've been helped the private sector succeed. So. Don't know when people tell -- somehow. Government. Is irrelevant. Now everything we -- -- some connections making sure that we collectively as a democracy are making some Smart investments in the future. That's. Yeah yeah. What congress is doing right now is import. Unfortunately. Right now. The debate that's going on congress. Is not meeting the task of helping middle class parents. It's just. Back but they're not focused on you. They're focused on politics. They're focused on. Trying to -- me. Not focus on your. Headlines coming up that congress passed to me. And I I want folks to pay attention to this congress have to meet two deadlines and they're coming up pretty quick. The first. Deadline. The most basic constitutional duty congress heads. Is to pass a budget that's congress one -- one. They don't pass a budget by September 30 what's the -- today. That's why. -- so if congress doesn't. A budget. In ten days a week from Monday. The government will shut down. A government shutdown shuts down many services every American people rely on. This is not abstract. Hundreds of thousands of Americans will not be allowed to go to work. Our men and women in uniform. Even those deployed overseas. Won't get their paychecks on time. Small businesses. They won't get their loans process. And another that has to happen. As long as congress passes a budget. Number one passing a -- Number two. In the next few weeks. Congress. Must vote to allow. The Department of the Treasury. To pay America's bills. That our Treasury Department that's where. We take -- money and we -- Right real simple. This is usually done. With a simple. Routine vote to -- what's called the -- -- If you don't raise the debt -- America can't pay its bills. Since the 1950s. Congress has always passed it. Every president has signed. Democrats. Republicans. Ronald Reagan. -- -- It doesn't matter this is just a routine thing -- -- gotta do so that treasury can pay the bills. If congress doesn't pass this debt ceiling in the next few weeks. The United States will -- ball. On its obligations. That's never happened in American history. Basically America becomes a deadbeat. The world sees America not paying its bills. Then they will not buying. Debt treasury bills from the United States or if they do they'll do -- at much higher interest rates that means somebody want to buy. An F one victory we'll have to pay much higher interest rates eventually which means you'll sell less cars. That's just one. Example of how profoundly destructive. This could me. This is not some abstract thing. And -- -- implore raising the debt ceiling is not the same as the proving more spending. Any more than making your monthly payments. To the total -- cost your truck. You don't say well I'm not alone not -- my mind my bill. Might note. From my truck. Because -- save money. You're not -- my yard but the truck. Right. You have to pay the bills. You're not saving money you you might have decided at the front -- not to -- the truck. But once you bought the truck you can't say -- say the money just by not paying the bills. -- -- -- -- It doesn't cost a dime and does not -- -- Into our deficits. All it says is. You gotta pay for what congress -- said we're spend the money. If you don't do what we could have another financial crisis. And the fact is I don't lot of people are concerned about deficits. Our deficits are now coming down so quickly but the by the end of this year we will have cut them and more. Since I took office. -- -- I just want to break this down over time. I go to Ford dealership. Drive off with a move everyone fit. Unless -- pay cash and I've still got a -- -- each month. I can't just say -- -- -- -- my car payment this month. That's what congress. Is threatening to -- -- Santa. Don't pay the bills. There -- consequences that. The bill collectors start calling it right your credit goes out. And you get all kinds of problems same is true for -- country. So if we don't risk debt ceiling. Were dead -- If we fail to increase the debt limit. We would send our economy into a tailspin that's a quote by the way when I just. You know senate. The Republican speaker of the house done better. The Republican speakers and if we don't. Pay our bills. Will have an economic salesman so this is not just my opinion is everybody's good. Now. Why haven't we already gotten done if it's not a simple but. That's everybody is not they're all I -- -- -- and why and where to get this. Democrats. And some reasonable Republicans. In congress. Are willing to raise the debt ceiling and pass a sensible budget. And I want to work with the Democrats and Republicans usually do just that Claire McCaskill she's ready -- what. -- -- -- -- -- And we just pass the budget raise the debt ceiling we can get. Back to focusing on growing this economy and creating jobs educating our kids. All the things we gotta do. Unfortunately there is -- action on the -- right of the Republican Party right now there's not everybody but it's a pretty big action. Who convinced their leadership to threaten a government shutdown. And potentially threaten. Do not rated industrial and. They can't. Shut off be Affordable Care Act also known as Obama here. I think about this they're there they're not talking now about. You know spending cuts they're not talking about entitlement reform they're not talking about -- -- Another talk about something it has nothing to do with the budget. Right. There -- actually willing to plunge America. Into the -- strong if we can't define. The affordable care. Now let's get some perspective. The Affordable Care Act has been in the law. For three and a half years past both -- of the -- Supreme Court ruled it constitutional. It was an issue in last year's elections. -- the guy was running against -- city is gonna repeal it we won. The voters were pretty clear on this amendment Republicans in congress -- -- to repeal or sabotage this. More than forty times they've had these repeal votes. Every time they fail. This law. That is in place is -- providing people benefits. It's not holding back economic growth it's helping millions of Americans including some of you or your family members. You may not be aware -- You can keep your kid. On your own health insurance plans amid -- and writing and until their 26. Because the portal. The number of uninsured among young people -- gone down. Over the last three years. Senior -- they are benefiting right now from discounted that prescription drug costs because the ball. Other health insurance. Insurance -- can't impose lifetime limits on. They can't make -- use the fine print not to pay. More if you get -- Insurance governors have to spend 80% of your premiums on. Your health care not on administrative costs. Health care costs have actually increase at the slowest rate. In fifty years so this is helping. To reduce health care cost across the economy. Finally starting on October 1. It's gonna help millions of more people people who don't have health insurance right now. What it's gonna do is we're gonna set up. Pools have been just like a worker at Ford can benefit from good insurance rates because he got a lot of workers and one big pool now people who don't have. The good fortune to work -- a big company like Ford -- also get a good deal. Now. That's what so so that's why they're fighting. For they want to repeal all that and they're saying. We're gonna hold our breath and if you don't repeal it whichever is that I'm not gonna do we're gonna sell -- -- economy into default. There will send our economy into a tipped tail spin -- like speaker Boehner sent. They want to build that -- to ball. Just to make sure the tens of millions Americans continue not to have health care. Deep funding affordable health care -- rob 25. Million Americans the chance to get health care coverage. -- cut basic health care services for tens of millions of seniors on Medicare already and that's what our house Republicans are plentiful. Another gone beyond just holding congress hostage -- -- all country hostage. One Republican senator called shutting down if the government over the Affordable Care Act. The dumbest idea I've ever heard I agree with him. That's the strategy. -- -- -- -- House of Representatives voted on the tonight. I tell you what -- The American people have worked to -- For too long. Digging out of a real crisis. Just elect politicians in Washington -- another crisis. Does -- of America without some banana republic -- not a deadbeat nation. Were the world's best investment the entire world looks to us. To make sure the world economy is stable. We can't we -- does not pay our bills. And even threatening something like that at the height of irresponsibility. So what that is. I will not negotiate over the full faith and credit of the United States. -- -- -- -- The harm this country's reputation. But allow them to inflict economic data on millions -- people just -- they can make an ideological point. But I need you down. I need to help. Tell congress. Pay our bills on time. Pass a budget on time stop governing from crisis to crisis. Our focus back on word should be. All you the American people -- -- new job. I'm growing our economy. Cover -- security. A man. I don't know it's like -- do -- every six months. -- -- I don't find them disagree earlier they don't like to procure a -- rather have people not have health insurance. You know and I'm I'm happy to have that debate would. We don't have to threaten to blow the whole thing -- just good you don't get your wedding. About something the Jordan said. Her grandfather. Worked in this -- Uncle step mom. Worked in this -- -- she and her brother worked in this plan punching and as part of the next generation American workers at a great iconic American company. Our economy's coming back because of the resilience and determination. Of American workers like Jordan and her -- And every day all over this country there are men and women just like Jordan just like -- brother. -- wake up. Maybe pack a lunch for their kids kiss him goodbye. Go to work live up to the responsibilities. Do their jobs pay their bills. Should you expect to -- but people in Washington. Just do your job. -- the other gun. -- a guy who's. He's doing your job. No obstruction. No games. No holding the economic hostage. Economy hostage if you don't get a 100% what you want nobody gets -- present when you want. You guys know that -- own lives no semblance. How -- people are married here but you know you better learn not not to expect -- -- 100% of what you want. Otherwise you'll be divorced real quick. Especially you man I'm telling -- Please expect the -- that same common sense. Congress -- expect some -- You should expect some compromise. Expect the conviction of leaders who wake up and go to work every day not the tear something down but to build something better. Not just for today but for the world we want to leave our kids that's my conviction that's my commitment to you if we start thinking about. You instead -- politics and and and how you can get your base stirred up. That we're gonna be -- -- get back to the point where this country is what we wanted to be. If Washington will act with the same decency and common purpose that you and Americans all across the country do every single -- The economy will be stronger not just a year from our partners from now -- ten years from now but -- audience thirty and fifty years from now. President wrapped in a speech at a Kansas City, Missouri. Ford plant there. Subject quite a few things but for the most lighthearted -- little bit of marital advice out there talk about the compromises that are required are. Washington DC the president certainly using that as a backdrop. For the government intervention. The auto bailout 2008 for GM for Chrysler and some day. Trumpeting the success that Ford has had which did not receive government. Assistance. During the crisis. But instead using today's back drop in setting. As a platform to show how that company and that plan has been expanding bus aside from the economy and the auto industry specifically the president talked about. What is going on Washington DC and just a short time ago. The house has passed a continuing resolution essentially a stop -- funding bills that would keep the government in operation for the next three months however. He it would remove all funding for the affordable Barack Obama -- is as it is known. The president outlining too important dates that are coming out. For America's economy the September 30 deadline when virtually all funding for government operations. We'll have -- center will have run around congress we'll have had to pass the budget by that point. President also pointed out a second day and that is mid October and that is when the government will hit its debt ceiling and at this point. There isn't. In Washington. About how government will proceed past. Actually. Racking up the last bit of money it has available. In its credit president now wrapping up that -- Kansas City plant reports. Outcome for now and then -- New York this ABC news that the special. This has been a special group. Report from me.

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

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