President Obama Slams GOP for 'Manufactured Crises' in New Orleans

U.S. president highlights economic good news and slams GOP for government shutdown.
29:15 | 11/08/13

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Transcript for President Obama Slams GOP for 'Manufactured Crises' in New Orleans
This is a special room. -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- Weeks spent dealing with the government shut down. And of course the ugly Health Care Reform rollout he is at the Port of New Orleans and Louisiana Gulf Coast with plants and talk about. Ways to boost US exports. We will go to the president's when he takes the podium but first to Michael outside the White House where ABC's -- Bruce is joining us Mary thanks we witnessed today. So the question is who should we expect the president talk about the job numbers today because there is -- bit of a mixed message in the results. Absolutely is you mentioned the president is trying to put some of these health care woes behind him and pivot to the economy. To -- and -- some positive attention to his second term agenda and I expect you'll start with those. Jobs numbers that came out today they were better than expected over 200000. Jobs 200000 jobs are added last month but the unemployment rate did take up to seven point 8% and that's largely due in part to the impacts of the government -- -- -- the report was still better than many expected. The president will argue that to shut down -- an unnecessary. And -- that was inflicted on the economy -- having that should absolutely be avoided going forward as he calls on congress to go ahead and act on measures that will boost the economy and today the be focusing on exports as one of those means. And the question is which side will be -- -- on the strength of their voice there because both are going to be parsing those numbers. With somewhat different interpretations -- show in fact that we added jobs during the government shut down that obviously. Being a point by the White House. Absolutely here in Washington always two sides of the story and I suspect Republicans look out and say that the -- I didn't really have much of an impact but jobs were still added. Day jobs report was better than expected but of course the White House saying that there were still harm done to the economy that was unnecessary why put. The economy to -- this these kinds of damaging impact if you don't have to do so both sides spinning it to their advantage. And very quickly before we get to the present where he is on his way to the podium there beyond the headline more exports that are the structure which the president going to be talking about today. The president can argue that more exports equals more jobs he's there at the Port of New Orleans which is one of the largest ports are experts in exports in the country excuse me. And you'll be arguing that this is one of the things that the country needs to invest more in invest -- infrastructure for exports and and ships -- and all of those things that can help boost the economy going forward and this is part of his second term agenda that he wants to now focus on and now let's focus on the president's taking it. -- -- -- But -- great introduction. -- what passes for one and an -- Paul's got all the coats on land. -- Go to Chicago ordered. To know what it's like to be COLT. It is great to be here -- is especially happy. -- -- -- Love come Orleans but we did scheduled event early. I figure there's a limit that was probably could get into. They can't they can't get over -- street fast enough. If we -- daytime about. And I know that they're probably. A couple of my staff there LSU fans. I would mind saying for the game tomorrow night. I -- we have the president here I just saw him. A minute ago. And I wish them all the best. I also wanna acknowledge couple other people who are here you've got your governor Bobby Jindal senator. We've. The secretary of transportation Anthony -- was it. We have. -- Cedric Richmond your outstanding congressman. -- -- -- A whole bunch of his colleagues from a Congressional Black Caucus. Or some important work that they're gone. Not that there and I enjoy themselves at all while they're here. But we are thrilled to see them all here. You have one of the best mayors in the country. -- -- -- And I just -- we. Or seven or. By coincidence that the same name merry -- group. She's traveling around the state today and and doing unbelievable work on behalf of the people of Louisiana and I just wanna say. Nobody. Is -- -- Advocate on behalf the working people of Louisiana. The merry land so were were. We're very very proud of the work that she got. I'm -- thank. Mr. Larry Gary LaGrange. He now Palmisano and Chris Hammond they showed me around port. And. This is one be. By the way it is get a seat of Korea announced that a few -- -- -- If you don't have a seat and -- Boston don't want I don't want to hurt as a this is one of the busiest port complexes in the entire world. -- millions of tons of steel and chemicals and fuel and food every single year. I just found out -- also handle. A lot of the country's coffee which means you're responsible for keeping the White House awake at all times. But that's it. -- -- -- -- And in so many -- this port is represented. What ports all around the country debate helped to keep our economy go. Moving products movement. Moving people making sure that businesses -- -- You've got. Corn and -- it's coming down from my home state of Illinois down the river. And up here and then going all around the world and it's part of the reason why we've been able to increased. -- so rapidly is because we've got. Some of the best. Natural resources and waterways and facilities in the world. Now growing our economy creating new jobs helping middle class families. Regain a sense of stability and security they can find good jobs and make sure of their kids are doing even better made it. That's always been what America's about. But for too many people that sense. That you could make it here you -- that's that's been slipping away. And my driving focus -- bid to restore that sense. Of secure. And it should be Washington's focus. Regardless of party that's what everybody -- it should be thinking about -- So today -- -- -- -- opera couple ideas about what we could do right now together that would help mark. Right now. A good news is over the past 44 months our businesses have created seven point eight million new jobs. Since I took office we cut the deficits in half. That's right by the way you wouldn't -- -- sometimes less than folks on TV but. The deficits are drawn down they're not going up have been cut has. And they -- keep. They keep on -- Over the past. Three years health care costs have risen at the slowest pace on record. Exports are up the housing market is up. The American auto industry -- back. So we got a lot of good things to build off but we've got a lot more work to do. What we should start -- the first thing we should do. It stopped doing things that undermined. Our businesses and our economy. Over the past few years this constant cycle of manufactured crises and self inflicted wounds that have been coming out of Washington. For example we learned. Yesterday that over the summer our economy grew at its fastest pace in a year that's the good -- The bad news is that the very Dave -- economic quarter ended. Some folks -- -- in -- to shut down the government and threatened. To default on America's obligations for the first time in more than 200 years. And it's like -- -- of our economy. Every time -- -- just about to take off. Suddenly somebody -- the bricks -- says not so fast. Now. Our businesses are resilient we've got great workers and so as a consequence. We yet at about 200000 new jobs last month but there's no question that the -- harm our job market. The unemployment rate still ticked up. And we don't yet know all the data for this this final quarter of the year but it could be down because of what happened in Washington. That not makes no sense. These self inflicted wounds don't have to happen they should not happen again we should not be injuring -- every few months we should be investing in ourselves. We should be building. Not turn things down. Rather than re fighting the same mall battles again and again and again we should be fighting to make sure everybody who works hard in America and hard right here in New Orleans that they have a chance to get a -- that's what we should be focused. Which -- beta one of the reasons I'm here at this -- one of the things we should be focused on is helping more businesses sell more products to the rest of the world. And the only way those products get out is through facilities like this. Right now exports are one of the brightest spots in our com. Thanks in part to new trade deals that we signed with countries like Panama Colombia. And South Korea. We now export more goods and services that ever before. And that means jobs right here in the United States of America. Last year every one billion dollars and exports supports nearly 5000 jobs including jobs right here this -- So we're working on new trade deals that will mean more jobs for our work. And more bedrooms reports like best. And by the way -- -- when I travel around the world I'm -- -- selling -- go anywhere in the world. To make sure that. Those products stand with those words made in America that we can open up those markets and sell -- matter -- So helping American businesses grow creating more jobs. These are not democratic or Republican priorities they opt for -- is that everybody. Regardless of party should be able to get behind. And that's why in addition to working with congress to grow our exports. I put forward additional ideas where I believe Democrats and Republicans can join together to make progress right now. Number want. Congress needs to pass a farm bill. That helps rural communities grow and protects vulnerable Americans. -- for decades congress found a way to compromise passed farm bills without -- For some reason that congress can't even get bad about it. This is not something that just benefits farmers. Ports like this one. Depend. All the products coming down the Mississippi. So let's get right back pass a farm bill we could start sell more products that's more business for the sport. That means more jobs right. Number joke. We should fix our broken immigration system. -- this would be good for our national security. But it also be good for our economic secured. Over the next two decades. It would grow our economy by one point four trillion dollars it would shrink our deficits by nearly a trillion dollars. This is this should not be a partisan issue President Bush proposed broad outlines a common sense immigration reform almost a decade ago. -- of the senate I joined 23 of my Republican colleagues. To back those reforms. This year the -- already passed a bill with broad bipartisan support. All -- -- now is waiting for the house back. I don't know what -- hold opens. But if there's a good reason not to do it I haven't. There's no -- both parties can come together get this done this year. Get a -- it. Number three. Democrats and Republicans should work together on a responsible budget that sets America on a stronger -- for the future. We shouldn't get caught up in the same -- fights. And we should just cut things just for the sake cutting back Bremer I want to remind him what's happening in the deficits. They're going down. The shrinking they're falling faster than they have in sixty years. We have to do now is do what America is -- about. Make some wise investments in our people. And at our country. There will help us grow over the long term. We should close wasteful tax -- -- don't help our jobs. Don't grow our economy and then. Invest that money and things that actually do create jobs -- One those things -- building new roads and bridges and schools and parks. That creates jobs that put people to work during the construction phase and that creates an infrastructure. For our economy that's -- movement forward. Educating our kids train our workers so they're prepared for the global economy that helps us grow we should be investing -- that. And that Maryland has been doing a great job. In improving education here in New Orleans. Investing in science and research and technology. Keeps our businesses our military and are cutting -- That's the kind of investment we should be back. We think about our infrastructure. In today's global economy businesses are gonna take root and grow wherever -- the fastest most reliable transportation and communications networks. -- -- -- So China is investing a lot of infrastructure Europe. Investing a whole lot infrastructure in Brazil's investing a whole lot and infrastructure. What we don't. You know work. Doing some good things locally here. And state city -- trying to. Do some work but nationally. Were falling behind. We're relying on. Old stuff. I don't I don't think we should ever. -- old stuff -- -- -- stuff. That is go to help us grow and keep pace with global competition. Rebuilding our transportation and communications networks is one of the fastest ways to create good jobs. Consider the just a couple years from now we're gonna have new super tankers that are gonna start coming through that -- -- map. And these tankers can hold three times as much cargo as today's. If a -- can't handle those super tankers -- goal load and unload cargo somewhere else. So there -- work that we can start villain in terms dredging and making. Pathways deeper which means the super tankers can have more stuff on means they -- unload. And load more. Stuff. Which makes this -- more competitive. So why wouldn't we put people who work upgraded. Why would we do that. It's not because our ports -- one in nine of our bridges rated structurally deficient. More than 40% of our major highways are congested. Souls are expects. -- -- -- Lucid moment. Tarmac wonder why it is that you're not taken off. Get aggravated when you go fly someplace. -- the reasons we've got this antiquated. Air traffic control system. We need the next generation air traffic control system it would reduce time travel it would reduce delays. It reduces fuel cost for airlines it reduces pollution in the -- we know how to do it. We just haven't done it. That should be a democratic or -- commission. That's just Smart to go ahead -- something that people across the political spectrum should be able to agree. Now here's the -- All these opportunities. And challenges they're not gonna magically fix themselves we've got to do. And anybody who says we can't afford to pay for these things needs to realize -- therefore. I got to -- an example. A lot of trucking company's now re -- -- shipments to avoid traffic and unsafe bridges so -- -- going longer. Then they need to that cost them money. -- you're paying for. -- cost -- get passed on to consumers. -- means companies are making as much for profit maybe they've got fewer employees. So directly or indirectly. We're paying for the longer we delay the more will -- But the sooner we take care business the -- And I don't think there's one thing but members of congress from both parties want -- -- infrastructure projects that create good jobs in their desperate. That's why last year -- took a step without congress. To speed up the permit process for big infrastructure projects like upgraded our ports just cut through the -- tonight. Get it done faster this. Year rebuilding our infrastructure could be part of a bipartisan. Budget deal. A couple months about what foreign idea to try to -- of the old arguments. A grand bargain for middle class jobs and -- what I said was will -- our corporate tax code. Close some calls. Wasteful tax rubles. And incentives to ship jobs overseas. Lower. Tax rates for businesses to create jobs here in the United States and use some of the money we save. By switching to -- smarter tax system to create good construction jobs building things that are businesses need right here in America. -- -- pretty sensible deal. So weak it if we took that step we could modernize our air traffic control systems keep -- running on time. Modernize our power grids and pipelines so they survive storms. Modernize our schools to prepared -- for jobs of the future. Modernize our ports. They can accommodate the new ships. Point is rebuilding our infrastructure educating our kids funding basic research they are not partisan issues. -- American issues. There used to be a broad consensus that these things were important to our -- and we've got to get back to that mindset. Got to move forward on these things together doesn't mean that there aren't going to be disagreements. On a whole bunch of stuff but let's work on the things we agree on. I'm gonna make one last point one area where we haven't made much bipartisan progress. At least as much that -- -- fixing our broken health care system. You know like I took up this cause knowing it was hard. There was a reason why no other president had Bennett. To make sure every American has access to quality affordable health care and make sure that no American ever again -- -- -- -- one illness. -- -- -- He. And and the work we've already done it. Has resulted in over the past three years health care costs rising at the slowest pace on record. Health care cost for businesses are growing about 13 of the rate they were a decade ago and we want those trends to continue. Now. We've had this problem website. I'm not happy about that. -- but -- working overtime to make sure that it gets fixed because right now we put in place a system a marketplace where people can get. Affordable healthcare plans. -- by promising numbers but more frustrate I want to go in and fix myself but I don't write code so. But to every American with a preexisting condition has been waiting for the -- they could be covered just like everybody else. Or firfer folks who could -- four. To buy their own -- as they don't get it on the job. We're gonna fix this website -- -- insurance plans are there they are good and millions of Americans already finding. The -- game better coverage for less cost and is the right thing to get. I know that's I know health -- -- controversy so you know. There's -- can be. So much support we get on on that on a bipartisan basis. Until -- worked really well remembered stopped called barker. They don't call something else. One thing a lot of talk here mayor to governor about. Though it is a separate issue which is one things that they Affordable Care Act swap states to expand Medicaid to cover more -- citizens. And. You know an error here in Louisiana. Here here here in -- -- that benefit about 265000. People. And already exceeds thanks arkansas' covered. Taken this up and they're covering almost 14%. Of their uninsured. Got a Republican governors of states like Ohio Nevada Arizona don't have to. Oregon started reduced. Has started reduced. The number of uninsured by about 10%. And -- -- some of these folks oppose. Obamacare but they -- support. -- -- citizens. Who can't get good coverage so so we want to work with everybody. Mayor governor. Insurance wherever it is -- that wants to work with us here in Louisiana to make sure that. Even if you don't support the overall plan. Let's at least. Go ahead and make sure that the folks who don't have health insurance right now can get it through an expanded Medicaid -- make sure we do. Let them build. They -- and why the -- -- I said this before sometimes. People don't don't fully appreciated. We already pay for the health care people who don't have health insurance we just paper the most expensive version which is when -- go to emergency. Because what happens is the hospitals have to take six vote. -- just -- -- on the streets. But people were sick may wait till very last minute. It's much more expensive to treat him. Hospitals -- to figure out how to get their money back which means. They jacked up cost for everybody who does have no health insurance. By about a thousand dollars per family so as a consequence what happens news. Yard -- a hidden tax. For broken helped assist. Community hospital struggle to care for the uninsured who can't pay their bills when they get sick. What's the right thing to do for the health of our competence. As a whole. It is very practical pragmatic reason to do as -- to do with politics or ideology and -- more states that are working. Together. Democrats and Republicans better off we're going to be. So bottom line is -- We can work together to do these things. Because we've done -- before. We did not become the greatest nation on -- just by chance just by accident we have some advantages really nice real estate. -- in the United States. But. What we also had. Were people who despite their differences and we come from everywhere and look different have different traditions. We understand that this country works best when working together. And we decide to do what was necessary for our businesses our families to succeed and if we did in the past we can do it again. So let's make it easier for more businesses to expand and grow and sell more goods made America the rest of the world. Let's make sure we got the best ports and roads and bridges schools. -- make sure our young people are getting a great education. Let's give everybody a chance. To get ahead not just a few of the top ever but. Could we do that. If we help our business brought our communities thrive and our children's -- tool hire them. The economy's gonna grow faster. We'll rebuild our middle class. Stronger. The American dream. Will be real and achievable. Just for a few but for everybody not just today but for decades to come that's what we're fighting for. That's what -- all about here at this port and hearing oral wants. Above the port workers waited make sure we keep that a thank god but. President talking economy at Port of New Orleans in Louisiana there I want to bring in ABC's Mary -- talk but. Some of the things that the president addressed there today obviously Mary the president has been overshadowed a lot by the Affordable Care Act rollout. And economically speaking and talking about the latest unemployment numbers but certainly a supportive crowd there outside of the Port of New Orleans that was -- -- Hearing that economic message. We just heard was the president going on the offensive trying to have focused attention away from the crises that are happening here in Washington and back on his second term agenda. We heard and touting the need to invest. In infrastructure the need to boost exports to try and help grow the economy and of course blaming Republicans and and lawmakers appear on the hill for not doing enough to get onboard with his agenda to try and grow the economy but. Also that it doesn't think -- careening from crisis to crisis here. We had to the government shut down the debate over -- that the threat to default and now all these problems with health -- dot gov and the president's. Health care law on the enrollment process of the president is trying just kind of -- grabbed the public's attention and focus on the things that he would like to get done. These next three years and as well with that kind of effort -- -- the focus did we hear anything that changed the headlines from today. Not much I think despite these efforts to try and refocus the attention you're still gonna hear. Most of the headlines of most people's focus being on that these problems with the web site. Or five weeks into it now and -- still finding more problems that need to be fixed -- that the administration has said that they'll have all of those problems solved in the collapse it will be up and running as it should by the end of the month. The president seems confident about will happen that that is achievable and and then people can go ahead and start in rolling. And health care as as they intended but this system -- -- issue that's dominating all of the attention here. And Mary correct me if I'm wrong in his interpretation this it is the president is trying to deflect some of the attention away from the White House and turn it back on the congress. From some of the comments that were made today. Absolutely funny how he does that -- he's trying to to draw attention to the fact that he's trying to do all of these things that would help grow the economy as we mentioned earlier we saw some of those jobs numbers today. The president saying the Republicans are doing unnecessary harm. The economy -- mentioning in particular the government shut down that that was an unnecessary crisis a self inflicted wound as he said that he wants Republicans to help them actually do things that would help grow the economy instead absolutely still finger pointing back here Washington. Public -- down there in Louisiana. Finger pointing Friday maybe that's the new term right -- ABC's very recess at a White House Mary thank you for that we appreciate it -- report right here on abcnews.com for -- -- -- -- -- New York. With the CBC news digital special report.

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

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