President Obama & Vice President Joe Biden

President Obama & Vice President Joe Biden

Saturday, December 13, 2014

Giving Thanks for Our Troops

Remarks of President Barack Obama
Weekly Address
The White House
December 13, 2014
Hi, everybody. It’s the holidays—a season to give thanks for our many blessings. The love of family. The joy of good friends. The bonds of community. The freedom we cherish as Americans. The peace and justice we seek in the world.
As we go about our days, as we gather with loved ones and friends, it’s important to remember: our way of life—the freedom, prosperity and security that we enjoy as Americans—is not a gift that is simply handed to us. It has to be earned—by every generation. And no one sacrifices more to preserve our blessings than our extraordinary men and women in uniform.
That’s why, on Monday, I’ll be visiting our troops at Joint Base McGuire-Dix-Lakehurst in New Jersey—to salute them for their service and thank them for their sacrifices. Since our nation was attacked on 9/11, these men and women, like so many others in uniform, have met every mission we’ve asked of them. They deployed to Afghanistan and Iraq. In more than a decade of war, this 9/11 Generation has worked with the Afghan people to help them reclaim their communities and prevent terrorist attacks against our own country.
Now, many of our troops are returning from Afghanistan, and on Monday, I’ll be proud to help welcome them home. That’s because, this month, our combat mission in Afghanistan will be over. Our war in Afghanistan is coming to a responsible end.
Of course, the end of our combat mission in Afghanistan doesn’t mean the end of challenges to our security.We’ll continue to work with Afghans to make sure their country is stable and secure and is never again used to launch attacks against America. The troops I’ll visit on Monday have been part of our mission to degrade and ultimately destroy ISIL in Iraq and Syria. They’ve been supporting our efforts in West Africa to fight the Ebola epidemic and save lives. Because in times of crisis and challenge, the world turns to America for leadership. And when the world calls on America, we call on the brave men and women of our armed forces to do what no one else can.
So this holiday season, as we give thanks for the blessings in our own lives, let’s also give thanks to our men and women in uniform who make those blessings possible. Even as some are coming home for the holidays, many more will be far from their families, who sacrifice along with them.
There are so many ways we can express our gratitude to our troops, their families and our veterans—everyone can do something. To find out what you can do, just go to As a nation, as Americans, let’s always keep striving to serve them as well as they have always served us.
Thanks, have a great weekend, and God bless our troops and their families.

Saturday, December 6, 2014

Ensuring Americans Feel the Gains of a Growing Economy

Remarks of President Barack Obama
Weekly Address
The White House
December 6, 2014
Hi, everybody.  Just in time for the holiday season, we now have another piece of good news about the pace of our economic recovery.
Last month, our businesses created 314,000 new jobs.  And that’s not a fluke – it keeps up the solid pace of job creation we’ve seen all year long.  November was the tenth month in a row we’ve added more than 200,000 jobs.  So far this year, our economy has created 2.65 million new jobs.  That’s the most of any year since the 1990s – even with a full month to go.  All told, our businesses have created 10.9 million new jobs over the past 57 months.  And that’s the longest streak of private-sector job creation on record.
We also know that the upswing in job growth this year has come in industries with higher wages.  Overall wages are on the rise.  And that’s some very welcome news for millions of hardworking Americans.  Because even though corporate profits and the stock market have hit all-time highs, the typical family isn’t bringing home more than they did 15 years ago.  And that still has to change.  And a vibrant jobs market gives us the opportunity to keep up this progress, and begin to undo that decades-long middle-class squeeze. 
But first, we need the outgoing Congress to pass a budget and keep our government open.  A Christmas shutdown is not a good idea.  Then, when the new Congress convenes in January, we need to work together to invest in the things that support faster growth in higher-paying jobs.
Building new roads and bridges creates jobs.  Growing our exports creates jobs.  Reforming our outdated tax system and our broken immigration system creates jobs. Raising the minimum wage would benefit nearly 28 million American workers, giving them more money to spend at local businesses – and that helps those businesses create jobs. 
America, we still have a lot of work to do together.  But we do have real, tangible evidence of our progress.  10.9 million new jobs.  10 million more Americans with health insurance.  Manufacturing has grown.  Our deficits have shrunk.  Our dependence on foreign oil is down.  Clean energy is up.  More young Americans are graduating from high school and earning college degrees than ever before.  Over the last four years, this country has put more people back to work than Europe, Japan, and every advanced economy combined. 
The United States of America continues to outperform much of the world.  And we are going to keep it up until every American feels the gains of a growing economy where it matters most – in your own lives. 
Thanks, and have a great weekend.