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Obama Populist Speech

December 7, 2011 by staff 

Obama Populist Speech, President Obama laid out the populist themes of his 2012 re-election bid during a speech on Tuesday in which he blasted Republicans and Wall Street while calling for an extension of the payroll tax cut. Echoing Teddy Roosevelt’s famed “New Nationalism” speech from more than a century ago, the president told a crowd of supporters in Kansas that, “This is the defining issue of our time. This is a make or break moment for the middle class, and all those who are fighting to get into the middle class.”

According to The New York Times: “Infusing his speech with the type of populist language that has emerged in the Occupy protests around the nation, Mr. Obama warned that growing income inequality meant that the United States was undermining its middle class. He said it ‘gives lie to the promise that’s at the very heart of America: that this is the place where you can make it if you try.’

Obama delivered his speech in a high school gymnasium in Osawatomie, the same small town where Roosevelt rolled out his progressive agenda in 1910.

Among the major messages of the economic speech, the president championed the middle class, calling for wealthier Americans to pay more taxes and for big corporate interests to follow the rules. “This country succeeds when everyone gets a fair shot, when everyone does their fair share, and when everyone plays by the same rules,” he said.

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